STADIUM UPGRADE: Artist impressions of the proposed C.ex Coffs International Stadium.
In hope of drawing in more major sporting events $6.5 million has been promised by the Federal Government to upgrade the C.ex Coffs International Stadium.

Over the past year the stadium has hosted high-end sports events such as the World Rally Championships, Sydney Swans v North Melbourne AFL pre-season knock, Newcastle United v Melbourne City A-league clash and Southern Stars v Proteas women’s one day international cricket matches.

Federal Member for Cowper, Luke Hartsuyker, this week announced the funding from the Better Regions program would allow substantial upgrades to bolster the stadium’s reputation.

Mr Hartsuyker said it was estimated the stadium contributed about $30 million to the local economy.

He said the upgrade, which will have close to 2000 seats installed of which more than half will be under cover, will make a “great facility” better.

Mr Hartsuyker said the funding was available but remained subject to legal agreements.

“I believe it will bring in more great events to the local area,” he said.

This funding comes on top of the $500,000 put towards the car park, improving access and increasing the area for the mechanical pits during the WRC.

It is understood the stadium upgrade will cost in the region of $13.4 million.

Nationals Member for Cowper Luke Hartsuyker announces $6.5 million Federal funding for the Coffs. C.ex International Stadium with Coffs Harbour Mayor Denise Knight.

Coffs Harbour Mayor Denise Knight said this upgrade would put Coffs above its regional sporting rivals.

“We are competing with Tamworth, the Tweed, Newcastle and Port Macquarie,” she said.

“It just so happens every time we lag we get some funding and we’re back up there.

“We’re back in business for the sporting fraternity.”

Cr Knight said this upgrade was not only good for Coffs Harbour but for the region as it would draw in more people to the Coffs Coast.

She said the more people in the region, the greater the economy leading to more growth.

The Coffs Harbour City Council will contribute $4.72 million to the stadium upgrade from loans and a further $2 million from its Transformation to Sustainability funds.