There were sighs of relief all round when it was confirmed this morning that the North Harbour Stadium was undamaged by yesterday’s violent tornado.
The stadium, which is just metres from the Albany shopping mall “escaped unscathed” said the stadium’s chief exec. Craig Goodall.
North Harbour is to host the France v. Japan, Australia v. Italy, South Africa v. Namibia and South Africa v. Samoa matches during the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand later this year.
At one time it was thought that the English team training venue would be re-located to the stadium after the Christchurch earthquakes, but their matches were moved to Dunedin.
The French team will be staying in neighbouring Takapuna at the Spencer on Byron, an apartment hotel plagued by leaky building syndrome. An issue that has affected a good number of modern developments in New Zealand. The team will be training at Takapuna Rugby Club’s facilities in the Onewa Domain.
Around 40 insurance assessors were out at the Albany mall this morning assessing the damage caused by the tornado to 40-50 properties and a number of motor vehicles.
Among them were assessors from troubled AMI insurance, whose Albany office was damaged by the twister.
There was also damage to around 20 homes in Roseberry Avenue, Birkenhead and across the harbour in Pt. Chev.
Initial estimates are running into tens of millions of dollars. Insurance companies already stretched by quake damage in Canterbury, are said to be confident that they will be able to meet the costs of repairs. source
We’re all hoping that the centre will be back to normal well before the first tourists and teams arrive for the tournament.
Also read yesterday’s blog