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ELS Hall Field No. 1 Gets $3 Million 'Cool' Upgrade

Published on 10 February 2017

A new multi-purpose synthetic grass using ‘cool’ cork technology is the latest project to be completed in a multi million dollar upgrade of ELS Hall Park, North Ryde.      

Part of the City of Ryde’s ongoing Synthetic Sports Surfaces Implementation Plan , the Council’s $3 million investment will extend the usability and safety of the ground that is enjoyed by an estimated 10,000 players per year from local sporting clubs, social sports and schools.

City of Ryde’s Mayor Clr Bill Pickering said:  “ELS Hall is deemed a regionally significant sporting fixture and this upgrade is part of Ryde Council’s commitment to provide high quality facilities that meet current and future needs of sporting groups.   

“The synthetic grass product used not only delivers a year round consistent playing surface, its organic cork infill provides a surface that is up to 20°C cooler on the hottest days when compared to other infill material.  It is a natural, recyclable product and ELS Hall Park is the first field in Australia to utilise this new, ‘cool’ cork system. 

“This upgrade is a real game-changer to future-proof ELS Hall Park for generations to come. Particular thanks must be given to Clr Roy Maggio who initiated discussion more than four years ago about the need for synthetic sports surfaces to cater for an ever-increasing demand for sports field usage locally,” the Mayor added.

A recent study commissioned by the City of Ryde identified a shortfall of three playing fields to meet the current demand for winter sports training.  The ELS Hall Park Synthetic Sports Field Project is part of Council’s response to this issue.

The three-year ELS Hall upgrade includes:

$3M - Field No. 1 upgrade

  • New synthetic turf surface using a 100% cork infill system with shock and heat absorbing properties for player safety
  • A synthetic cricket pitch that can be manually raised and lowered
  • New 1.1 metre high chain mesh perimeter fencing with improved field access points
  • 1.5 metre wide perimeter path with seating and fitness station.

$120K - Lighting installation (completed April 2016)

  • Lighting level of 100 lux for night games
  • Lighting level of 50 lux for training

$536K - Amenities Block Fields 1 & 2 upgrade (completed May 2016)

  • Four new change rooms with shower facilities
  • New umpire changing room and shower
  • New canteen facilities
  • Refurbished public toilets
  • New decking/entertainment/viewing area.   

ELS Hall Park is the home base for several football codes who have contributed funds to the upgrade.  They include AFL NSW/ACT North Ryde Dockers Club ($50k), Cricket NSW ($25k), Gladesville and Hornsby Cricket Association, North West Sydney Koalas Women’s Football.  

Chairman of the Ryde Sport and Recreation and Wheeled Sports Advisory Committee Clr Roy Maggio said: “Football is the most popular sport in NSW and this is a great outcome for the local sporting community and school groups.

“ELS Hall Park is a great community asset and this upgrade is a big boost to player safety, allowing codes to play right through the year. The City of Ryde is now leading the way in sport.”

The new ELS Hall Park turf conforms to FIFA Quality 1 Star recommendation, as well as AFL and Cricket Australia community surface requirements.

To view time lapse video of the synthetic turf laying at ELS Hall Park go to

A community kick-off celebration is planned for Friday, 3 March 2017.

ELS Hall Park is also home to the Ryde Community Sports Centre and is part of the Shrimptons Creek pedestrian/cycleway.  ELS Hall Park provides a range of indoor and outdoor sporting fixtures, floodlit fields, walking tracks and paths, cycle path, playground, picnic shelters, BBQ, public toilets, accessible toilet and dog off-leash.   

Last updated on 14 February 2017