€7.7m stadium works ‘great story for area’

By Maurice Garvey

WORK on a major €7.7m upgrade of Tallaght Stadium could begin as early as June.

The enhancement plans by South Dublin County Council for the stadium were passed by members at the full council meeting on Monday at the National Basketball Arena.

North stand compressor

How the €5m North Stand will look from inside the stadium

Estimated costs increased by approximately €2m but the council say the project still represents “value for money” after a number of options were “intensively tested and costed”.

The bulk of the project costs are for a new €5m North Stand, facing out on to the N81.

The council hope to further utilise the stadium as a multi-use facility and revenue generator, with new covered seating and corporate facilities suitable for hosting concerts and all manner of events.

Last year, the local authority stated the possibility of the venue hosting up to 20,000 people, with the addition of temporary on-field seating.

Works are set to increase the seating capacity to in excess of 10,000 – from it’s current 8,000 capacity.

Airtricity League club Shamrock Rovers lease the council owned stadium, and it is also the home of the Senior Women’s FAI team and men’s underage teams.

A big part of the enhancement works would see Shamrock Rovers relocated to a fitted out undercroft at the new North Stand, which can be accessed by fans on the N81 side.

According to a report by the council, wing walls will be constructed on each end of the North Stand for safety, shelter and viewing arrangements.

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The bulk of the project costs are for a new €5m North Stand facing out on to the N81

“These walls will also significantly enhance the visual aspect of the stadium from the N81.”

The North Stand will feature full seat numbers with covered stairs.

A central premise of the project is the redevelopment of the West Stand, with enhanced corporate facilities, including a fully serviced kitchen to meet EUFA requirements.

Proposals for an additional floor with full pitch view were omitted due to “prohibitive costs” identified.

The council believe the revised layout will provide much enhanced stadium management options and improve visitor experience.

 At the meeting, councillors were supportive of the project.

“It’s a great news story for the area,” said Cllr Charlie O’Connor (FF).

The stadium first opened in 2009 and it has hosted the Special Olympics’ opening ceremony in 2018, Cristiano Ronaldo’s Real Madrid debut, and rugby union and rugby league fixtures.

Following confirmation of the go ahead with the plan, Tallaght Community Council lamented an “opportunity missed for a viewing tower on stadium ground.”

The council hope to commence the Part 8 process before the end of June.

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