11 June 2012

Plans to expand the TSB Stadium in New Plymouth have been considered by councillors. A $28 million development which includes 3 new indoor court spaces, and 14 outdoor netball courts has been proposed in the New Plymouth 2012-2022 draft long term plan.

Chairman of Taranaki Tennis Board, Andrew Baylis, presented to councillors on May 30th demonstrating the enthusiasm of tennis to be included alongside numerous sporting groups such as basketball, netball, volleyball and the YMCA operation.  "Tennis and netball have a symbiotic need regarding court size and surface. It’s virtually a one to one ratio”, Mr Baylis said.

However, developments have been put on the back burner for now and the development of the project has been deferred for a year.

The Stadium plan has been fine tuned giving council officers the opportunity to look into more cost effective and long-term sustainable options for the $28 million project – meaning that 2016 could see construction work begin on the TSB Stadium. And with just a few extra lines added to the 14 outdoor netball courts, Taranaki could have a central tennis location making New Plymouth eligible for a variety of local, regional and national tournaments.

Expansion of the current indoor facilities from 1 basketball court, to 3 court spaces could mean potential year-round tennis participation for the community and possible future hosting of Davis Cup & Fed Cup ties.

Fingers crossed for a positive decision and an enhanced profile of tennis and of the Taranaki region within the NZ tennis community.