Common sense has prevailed. The FFA, in a rare show of pragmatism, has agreed that the match between the Wellington Phoenix and the Melbourne Victory, scheduled for this Saturday is postponed to a later date. The following is a statement from Westpac Stadium,
- Stadium cleared of major structural damage
- Superficial damage throughout the building will require repairs
- Wellington Phoenix v Melbourne Victory match scheduled for Saturday to be postponed to a later date
Following a detailed engineering assessment, Westpac Stadium has been cleared of major structural damage. The stadium closed its doors yesterday as a precautionary measure following the Kaikoura 7.5 earthquake early on Monday morning.
Stadium offices, and the ground level of the public car park, reopened on Tuesday. However the internal concourse and seating bowl remain closed until repairs have been completed. These repairs are expected to take two weeks to complete.
As a result, Football Federation of Australia in consultation with the Wellington Phoenix and the Stadium, has made the decision to postpone this weekend’s A-league fixture between the Phoenix and Melbourne Victory.
Stadium Chief Executive, Shane Harmon said public safety was the stadium’s top priority.
“We are disappointed to have to reschedule a sporting event for the first time in the Stadium’s history, however there is simply not enough time to complete the repairs required”.
Damage included burst water pipes, concrete cracking and spalling, broken windows and some liquefaction on the stadium ring road. The mezzanine level car park will remain closed until repairs are conducted on the car park up-ramp. The ground level car park has been cleared and is open.
“Our engineers have said that the building has performed as expected. The damage is similar in nature to that incurred during the July 2013 earthquake and we’re confident that it can be repaired”.
Harmon said that the Stadium aimed to have the repairs completed well in advance of the Keith Urban/Carrie Underwood concert on December 3.
“We will continue to monitor the situation, and provide updates if the situation changes.”