Cape Town ditches pitch for U2
February 7 2011 at 11:18am
By Sibusiso Nkomo
Cape Town Stadium’s pitch has been removed to make way for one of the largest concert stages in South Africa’s history ahead of U2’s performance next Friday.
The grass was first cut to sand level and the stadium’s operational manager, Louw Visagie, said it would take until today to remove the rest of the grass needed to accommodate the 8 000m2 stage.
“After the pitch is cleared of grass we will hand over the venue to Big Concerts who will start building the stage. The concert organisers will foot the bill for the removal of the grass and for replacing it,” he said.
Visage said after the show, on February 18, the ground would be assessed for damage before a new pitch was seeded.
Visagie said the 11 479m2 pitch would be back to normal by May 28.
According to Pieter Cronje, director of communications for the City of Cape Town, the removal of the grass was necessary.
“Spectators will be standing in the pitch area and the protective covering (left) for a long period would have caused the grass to die,” Cronje said.
Lesley De Reuck, director of the stadium, said the U2 concert was a chance to establish the venue as the multi-purpose space for which it was built.
“The geographical position of the stadium is unparalleled in the world… The vibe of the restaurants, fan walk and the people shows that we can offer a spectacle and not just an event,” De Reuck said.