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$6m facelift

Shalveen Chand
Saturday, April 26, 2014

A $6MILLION plan by the Suva City Council to refurbish Albert Park can result in the relocation of the Hibiscus Festival.

Council acting CEO Bijay Chand said there was a chance the carnival could be moved from Albert Park, the carnival's traditional venue for more than half a century.

According to the refurbishment plan, the current ground will be improved upon with a proper drainage system to be put in place.

In addition, the current Kingsford-Smith Pavilion will be demolished to make way for a new and bigger pavilion covering almost half of the Southern Cross Rd.

Mr Chand said the project would take up to eight months to complete with the completion date set for February next year.

Mr Chand suggested that once completed, Albert Park would be used solely for sporting purposes by the general public.

The council agrees the Hibiscus Carnival does take its toll on Albert Park with money having to to be poured in to get the ground in proper order so sports can resume on it.

Hibiscus Event Group chairman Hirdesh Prasad said the carnival would take place at Albert Park this year and would continue to be held there even after the refurbishments take place.

The council also spends about $60,000 annually to clean Albert Park during and after the carnival.

Sports associations have also complained about the state of Albert Park after the festival.

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