Up until the mid-1970s the Ian Barker Fields were used as a general waste disposal area, prior to being repurposed as a sports field. Over time, depressions have appeared in the playing surface which has led to half the field being unusable, and the remaining area only able to be used for training.
The upgrade of Ian Barker Fields is a key recommendation contained within the Alexandra Park Sports Precinct Master Plan, which was developed after extensive consultation with key users including St Pat’s Soccer Club, North Albury Auskick, Steamers Rugby Union Club, East Albury Cricket Club and Cricket Albury Wodonga.
The project proposes to reconstruct a four hectare area into a multi-purpose playing fields with lighting. The upgraded area can be used for AFL (one full-size senior oval), soccer (four senior-size soccer fields) or cricket (synthetic wicket). The project also includes the installation of perimeter fencing.
The reconstruction of Ian Barker Fields is a key recommendation from the recently endorsed Two Cities One Community Albury Wodonga Sport and Recreation Strategy. Completing these work now places Albury in a position to meet needs of growth of a range of sports.
Albury Mayor Kylie King said the new fields are a positive outcome for current and future user groups as sporting participation increases locally.
"As more and more of our community become involved in sport, the new fields will go a long way to bridging the gap for our active border community," said Mayor King.
"The fields will be able to host both matches and training, and could even support regional carnivals and gala days where matches can be played on multiple grounds at once," Mayor King said.
The reconstruction is due to begin in the second half of 2023 and completed by the end of the year, which will allow establishment of turf in readiness for next year's playing seasons.
For more information about the project, visit the AlburyCity website.