The long-awaited redevelopment of the Hyde Park pitch will commence next week, with the project expected to cost more than €500,000.
Roscommon GAA has confirmed that Prunty Contracts, who have been awarded the contract for the project, will commence works on Monday.
While the exact cost of the project has not yet been revealed, it is understood that the works will cost between €500,000 and €600,000.
The County Board were waiting until after Roscommon’s Connacht Senior Football Championship semi-final against Sligo last Sunday before beginning the project. Aogán Ó Fearghaíl, the GAA President, or another high-ranking official within the association, is expected to officially turn the sod on the development.
The pitch will be closed for more than six months, but Hugh Lynn, Roscommon GAA PRO, said: “We would be hopeful that our pitch will be ready to go on February 1st.” In that case, all Roscommon’s National Football League matches in Division One next season would be staged at the venue.
Mr. Lynn explained the nature of works that will get underway next week.
“They are going to put a new pitch down, as well as a new drainage system,” he said. “It is going to be a sand-based pitch and they are going to roll out a sod on top that is being grown in England at the moment. It is being grown on the same turf farm that grows the pitch for Croke Park.”
However, while the pitch in Croke Park is partly synthetic, the one at Hyde Park will be “100 per cent grass”, Mr. Lynn said.
The existing pitch has fallen into a state of complete disrepair recently. It forced three matches in this year’s league campaign – against Down, Monaghan and Dublin – to be switched to Longford, Kiltoom and Carrick-on-Shannon respectively.
News that the works will finally commence will be welcomed because the loss of matches such as these was an economic blow to the county town, in addition to being a significant setback for Roscommon GAA.