City oval set for a major overhaul

Shannon BeattiePilbara News
The playground at Kevin Richards Memorial Oval.
Camera IconThe playground at Kevin Richards Memorial Oval.

It’s an oval known by many names — some call it Millar’s Well, others the Kats Oval, but it’s real name is Kevin Richards Memorial Oval — and it’s set to undergo an extensive upgrade and redevelopment.

A detailed design of the entire site, including the estimated project cost, proposal of staged works and a construction timeline, is being prepared.

The key features of the development include new changerooms, Karratha Kats Football and Sporting Club clubrooms expansion, carpark formalisations and three multi-purpose hard courts.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said getting the technical and design planning process started was the next step towards beginning construction of the major redevelopment.

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“Many community groups and clubs use this site and this redevelopment will greatly improve the usability and functionality of the facilities now and into the future,” he said. “Plans for this project have been developed in close consultation with a number of key community and sporting groups who will continue to provide feedback as the technical and design planning process proceeds, including options for the location of the men’s shed.”

Other improvements set for the oval include pavilion refurbishment, play space redevelopment, lighting replacement, repositioning the Karratha Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service running track, the provision of space and services for a men’s shed, and landscaping.

Karratha Kats president Shane Harris said the redevelopment had been almost five years in the making.

“We mainly wanted an expansion of our clubrooms as the current one is too small,” he said.

“We’re a sporting club and we would like all of our members to be able to use the venue.

“The increase in size and addition of the courts means we can keep our club together rather than having it scattered all over the place, so when the girls train for netball they can use the clubrooms and the rest of our facilities.”

The City has allocated $875,000 to the Kevin Richard Memorial Oval redevelopment in the 2019-20 budget to be used for the technical and design stage, infrastructure works and the first stages of construction.

The council has also secured $900,000 in funding from the State Government.

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