Work to start on city hockey turf at Massey

New Zealand under-21 women’s hockey squad members Anna Crowley, Kelly Carline and Emma Rainey at the site of the future hockey pitch at Massey University.

Construction is about to commence on Palmerston North’s international standard hockey turf at Massey University, providing a third pitch for the sport in the city.

Polytan, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of synthetic sports surfaces, has been selected as the contractor and will start work next month. Depending on weather, the pitch will be ready for use early next year or possibly sooner.

It will be a community facility located adjacent to the Sport and Rugby Institute and close to the Manawatu Athletics Track, tennis and netball courts and other sports grounds. It will be jointly operated by Hockey Manawatu and Massey and is a result of an agreement between them and the Palmerston North City Council.

The initial funding for the turf was provided by the university and the council agreeing to up to $500,000 each and has been boosted by grants of $500,000 from the Lotteries Commission and $200,000 from the Central Energy Trust. Further fundraising is under way.

It will be used by local and visiting schools teams, local community social and competitive hockey teams, as well as being available to Massey for sport and exercise-related teaching and research.  

Massey sport advancement manager Jacob Oram says the turf will provide opportunities for the university community and wider region. “Having a third artificial turf will reduce the need for local teams to play on grass turfs and increase the opportunities available to local players and teams to train and compete on a state-of-art playing surface. It will also add to Manawatu’ s attraction for regional and national tournaments and events,” Mr Oram says. “We all benefit from a world-class facility like this and it is something that Manawatū can be proud of.

“The hockey turf will influence and intersect with the pillars recently outlined in Massey’s Sport Framework, which rests on student and staff engagement, reputation, fostering excellence and academic.”

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