Parramatta Eels, Wanderers Unveil $111 Million Plan To Upgrade Pirtek Stadium
National Rugby League side Parramatta Eels and A-League side Western Sydney Wanderers have unveiled a A$120M ($111M) proposal "to turn Pirtek Stadium into a 32,000-seat venue that would supersede plans to build a new stadium in western Sydney," according to Michael Chammas of the SYDNEY MORNING HERALD. The Eels and Wanderers met with Venues New South Wales and Parramatta City Council on Thursday "to discuss the proposal to build new grandstands at the northern and southern ends of the ground that would link the Ken Thornett and Mick Cronin stands." There are also plans "to build commercial space into the back of the proposed new grandstands that would allow for restaurants, cafes and offices to bring revenue into the precinct." The No. 1 priority for the Parramatta precinct "is to establish new training facilities and a high performance centre that would provide the Eels with a new gym, rehabilitation facilities and an extension of the training field" from 70 to 110 meters. Pirtek Stadium was given a A$29M government grant last year (A$20M federal, A$6M state and $3M local) "to upgrade the venue and the Eels and Wanderers have been debating the best way to use the money." It is understood that "the Wanderers and Eels have now agreed on how the money should be spent" (SMH, 4/26).