CologneMike wrote:Thomond Park Update
Thomond Park seems to be on Schedule for Autumn. The pitches turf has been removed. Nice contrast of stadiums with the GAA Pairc na nGael
in the foreground. I wonder could Richie Bennis twist JPâ€™s arm for an auld roof!
Well he's forked out around â‚¬5M already to pay off the debt on the stadium plus he's sponsoring both the hurlers and footballers at the moment so we'd probably be taking the piss asking him to shell out again!
Seriously though, Pairc na nGael or the Gaelic Grounds (whichever you prefer) is very much the poor relation compared to the new Thomond, Im sure its casting an envious eye at those shiny new stands. Unfortunately PnaG has turned out to be a serious white elephant. Since it re-opened in 2003, it has yet to be filled to its 48,000 capacity, the nearest it got was the 2nd tipp replay last year which drew just over 30k.
The vast, windswept terracing and uncovered stand arent exactly the most pleasant places to be on a cold,wet day. This type of design certainly isnt suited to the tropical climes of Ireland.
Obviously cost was a huge factor in the ommission of a roof but apparently the proximity of housing on this side of the ground and the resultant fears of overshadowing and loss of light would have meant securing planning permission would have been difficult. However this hasnt impacted on the new structures at Thomond Park. Of course many people would have you believe that the value of Munster rugby to the city results in TP receiving preferential treatment in comparison to PnaG.
Next on the agenda for the Gaelic Grounds is the introduction of floodlighting. Permission was refusedlast year but a new application is likely to be submitted in the near future. Unfortunately the prospect of the 3 open sides of Limerick GAA's HQ being roofed is pretty remote, however serious consideration should go into developing a nice stylish, cantilevered roof for the open stand. After all the view from this side of the ground is far superior due to a much steeper incline than the abomination that is the Mackey stand.
Thomond Park looks fantastic though, such a towering and elegant feature on the Limerick skyline.