Shellharbour stadium roof may cost $1.4m

A new roof for the Shellharbour City Stadium will cost $1.43 million if a proposed fix to the troublesome roof is endorsed by Shellharbour councillors on Tuesday night.

User groups say problems with the roof date back to when the multimillion-dollar complex opened in 2000, although the council previously said the leaks were first noticed in 2005.

Problems with the roof have since left the council hundreds of thousands of dollars out of pocket through lost revenue, temporary solutions and failed legal action against the architects and project managers involved in the construction of the stadium.

In 2011, the council began legal action after a number of design and installations defects were identified, however, the council was later advised to cease the legal action because it was initiated after a prescribed 10-year time limitation following the issue of the occupation certificate.

The total cost to the council for the unsuccessful legal action was $284,974 after each party agreed to bear their own costs.

In a report to be presented at Tuesday night's council meeting, the council's projects and contracts manager, Sheree Gillen, said ongoing closures have reflected poorly on the council and stadium, with lost opportunities to host major sporting events and dissatisfied user groups going elsewhere including a NSW Basketball tournament and regional roller derby games.

In September this year, consultants Arup concluded that due to the extensive and recurrent water leaks over many years, a total roof replacement was required.

"While this is the most expensive option, it is a permanent solution and provides a new roof with a life of between 20 and 25 years, therefore decreasing the ongoing maintenance costs that other options will present to us in time," Ms Gillen said.

The program of works would be broken into stages to minimise disruption to users. The final stage is scheduled for July 2014.

The first stage would be funded through restricted assets, while the remaining $1.05 million will be sourced by an application for a low-interest loan through the NSW government's Local Infrastructure Renewal Scheme.

In 2012, Kiama Municipal Council was granted a similar amount through the LIRS scheme for a new roof at the Kiama Leisure Centre, however, the centre was subsequently hit by a tornado in February this year and the cost of a new roof was covered by insurance.

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