Fears Páirc Uí Chaoimh cost may rise to €85m

Cork County Board have refused to comment amid fears that the cost of the Páirc Uí Chaoimh redevelopment project may rise to €85m.

With original estimates for the stadium redevelopment at €70m, in November 2015 a special meeting of county board delegates was informed that the figure had risen to €78m. It now appears that that figure had been revised upwards again, but there has been no official comment from Cork chiefs.

Board chairman Ger Lane would not comment on speculation that the cost had increased towards the €85m mark.

Lane did confirm yesterday that a stadium manager for the new Páirc Uí Chaoimh will not be appointed immediately.

On Monday, it was revealed that the stadium wouldn’t be open in time for either Munster final this year, with an event in late July — expected to be the All-Ireland hurling quarter-finals — instead slated as the opening.

While delegates at Tuesday’s monthly county board meeting were not updated on the process of recruiting a stadium manager, Lane has revealed that an appointment is not in the offing.

“There’s no appointment and I don’t foresee any immediate appointment either,” he said.

“All of that will be dealt with by the executive and the steering committee. Anything in relation to that will come before the executive, but we’re not appointing a stadium manager in the short-to-medium term.”

Last November, John Mullins — chairman of the stadium business committee, charged with the commercial side of the operation — said the appointment of such a person was the next significant step.

“We’ve drawn up a job description and there have been conversations with a recruitment agency while, as you might expect, a number of people have been in touch and sent in CVs in advance of that happening,” said Mullins.

“We have to get this right, and in all our conversations on this topic we’ve mentioned people like Peter [McKenna, Croke Park stadium manager] and Martin [Murphy, Aviva Stadium].

“These guys were brought in ahead of the commissioning of the stadium, and generally with these guys you need people who know every nook and cranny of the stadium they’re managing, and that’s what we want.

“So we have a job description and we’ve had conversations with recruiters about this, because obviously these guys don’t grow on trees.”

However, the job was not advertised and no interviews took place. For now, it would appear that the organisation of the facility will be kept in-house.

“Before we had the stadium, a lot of that was done by the senior administrator anyway,” said Lane.

“If you were booking the stadium for Sciath na Scol or whatever, or Páirc Uí Rinn for training, that was done through the office.”

Meanwhile, Tyrone have named an unchanged side for Sunday’s Ulster SFC semi-final against Donegal.

TYRONE (SF v Donegal):

N Morgan (Edendork); A McCrory (Errigal Ciarán), R McNamee (Aghyaran), P Hampsey (Coalisland); T McCann (Killyclogher), R Brennan (Trillick), P Harte (Errigal Ciarán); C Cavanagh (Moy), C McCann (Killyclogher); K McGeary (Pomeroy), N Sludden (Dromore), C Meyler (Omagh); M Bradley (Killyclogher), S Cavanagh (Moy), M Donnelly (Trillick).


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