SGL and BOON supported by Rawlinsons led the development process for this 76-hectare area owed by Rotorua Lakes Council – This Precinct includes Rotorua’s Outdoor Stadium and is the current home of Rotorua netball, hockey, rugby, athletics, touch, cricket and the 18-hole Springfield Golf Course.
Although the BOP Places and Spaces Strategy was in place, there was limited developed guidance for the potential strategic drivers for this substantive area. Key issues identified as part of the needs assessment and feasibility process included a District grass field shortage and further degradation of other key sports park areas due to geothermal activity; the low utilisation and high net cost of the Outdoor Stadium with a poor design fit for current purpose; and with NZ Golf discussed options for future golf provision. Another key strategic need was the requirement for inner city land for residential housing.
Furthermore, with Rotorua’s high Maori demographic (34%) and the area’s extensive land opportunity, opportunities for land rationalisation (to assist future funding) and key objectives for the Precinct were identified. These key objectives were:
• Consolidation and optimisation of the Precinct as the local home of outdoor field sports and as a participation tournament venue
• The opportunity to strengthen partnerships with regional and national sports with a high Maori participation
• As a destination Park with a community health and wellness focus.
In turn, these fundamental objectives guided all spatial and specific design development. Of key importance was also developing the Precinct future directions in partnership with Te Arawa, plus all recommendations have been developed with consideration of the governance/management requirements plus resourcing (both capex and opex) achievability, to enable these master planning directions to be achieved.