The major $51 million redevelopment of Sydney’s Concord Oval is set to commence after receiving the final tick of approval.
The spiritual home of rugby in Sydney will be bulldozed and completely rebuild, to become the headquarters of the Wests Tigers NRL club.
The stadium as we know it today, opened in the lead-up to the 1987 Rugby World Cup where it hosted eight matches, including the unforgettable semi-final when the Wallabies suffered a heartbreaking 30-24 loss to France in front of almost 18,000 fans. Since then, it has remained largely untouched.
Elite sport hasn’t been played at Concord Oval for a lengthy period, with the likes of Allianz Stadium, ANZ Stadium and Parramatta (now Bankwest) Stadium taking over. It has continued to host local sporting clubs, including as the home of Shute Shield side West Harbour.
The City of Canada Bay Council prepared a masterplan almost 10 years ago to bring elite sport back to the stadium and hoping it would once again become the home of rugby in the inner west. It seems that will no longer be the case, but it may host pre-season and other smaller events once the redevelopment is complete.
The Wests Tigers’ selected Concord Oval has their preferred location for their Centre of Excellence back in 2016, proposing a $27 million development at the time.
The major upgrade will include a new indoor recreation centre, open spaces, rooms for community groups, match facilities and a new high-performance centre for the Wests Tigers.
The two existing grandstands will be pulled down to make way for the new facilities. Covered seating for spectators will be incorporated into the new design.
Works are expected to commence early this year, with completion slated for mid-2021.