Naming rights deal could leave 'new' Páirc Uí Chaoimh debt-free
The redeveloped Páirc Uí Chaoimh could be debt-free by the time it re-opens next July if a naming rights deal comes to fruition. With work on the €80 million stadium heading into the final seven months, almost €64 million has already been secured, leaving €16 million outstanding.
A major initiative, designed to raise €13 million, was launched last night when 2000 ten-year premium tickets were put on sale at €6,500 each. If that's fully subscribed, it would leave only €3 million remaining, a figure that could probably be realised through naming rights.
Bob Ryan, chairman of the Stadium Steering Committee, said that they were exploring the naming rights issue and would be very interested "if the right offer comes along."
The €64 million already secured is comprised of €30 million in Government funding, €20 million from Central Council, €3.75 million from Munster Council, plus €10 million from Cork County Board funds.
Board chairman Gerard Lane insisted that the contribution to the 45,000-capacity stadium would have no effect on other activities in the county.
"The project is entirely stand-alone in financial terms and will not impact on the Board's support for its playing activities, which remain its priority," he said.
The new stadium, which will feature as part of the IRFU's bid to stage the 2023 Rugby World Cup, is due to be completed by mid-June and will be followed by a test run prior to what Cork hope will be the big launch day for the Munster football final on the first Sunday in July. They are also hoping to host the Munster hurling final a week later, although that would depend on agreement from other counties.
"It depends on the pairing and home and away arrangements but we'd be hoping that they might be suspended for a year," said county secretary Frank Murphy.
The last inter-county game in Páirc Uí Chaoimh was the Cork-Limerick Munster hurling final in 2014.