The new home of Gaelic games in Cork, Ireland – Pairc Ui Chaoimh – has been officially opened.
Facilities for spectators include modern seating for 21,000, as well as two newly built terraces for 24,000.
The 13,000 seat south stand has three levels, including the 2,238-seat premium level. There are more than 30 food and beverage outlets in the stadium.
Wide circulation areas around the stands and terraces make it much more comfortable for fans outside the ground.
GAA Cork County Board chairman, Ger Lane thanked the design team and said they now have a magnificent resource for their players, with state-of-the-art dressing rooms, as well as a fourth generation all-weather flood-lit playing pitch. He said:
Sunday is a great day for all those who are involved in the GAA community and for everyone who has an interest in sport. It marks the culmination of the work undertaken by very committed people to give Cork a stadium that is state of the art and which has been receiving great praise from those who have used it up to now be they players, mentors or supporters.
It is a multifaceted venue, being both a stadium and Centre of Excellence. It will showcase Gaelic games with the best contemporary facilities and will be a massive resource for our County teams at all levels in years to come. The stadium has already been used by local business organisations and by multinational and indigenous companies who have been bowled over by the range and quality of the conference and other facilities. Pairc Ui Chaoimh is, in every sense, a “Win Win” for Cork.
Lane said Páirc Uí Chaoimh has always been a favoured venue for concerts and the stadium will host three sell-out concerts next May, which will provide a major boost to the local economy as well Cork GAA.
A rare fixture double header involving both the Cork County Senior Football and Hurling finals provided the backdrop to the official opening.