THE Philippine Sports Commission is set to start renovations of its facilities, including the conversion of the playing surface of the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium from natural grass to artificial turf using its own funds.
PSC chairman Ricardo Garcia said that bidding for the renovation of the football field will begin next week in order to save on maintenance costs after the government agency failed to agree to terms with the Philippine Football Federation last year.
Garcia also said that aside from the football pitch, the baseball stadium will also be converted into an artificial turf playing surface.
“We want all our venues to be all-weather,” said Garcia on Monday. ”It will be bidded out. Tinatapos lang naming ’yung mga specs.”
Initially, the PSC agreed with the PFF to turn the pitch at the historic Rizal Memorial Football Stadium into an artificial playing surface as part of the Fifa’s Goal project.
The PSC, however, withdrew from the deal as the world football governing body required PFF to gain full control of the venue.
The PFF has shifted the Goal project to a property in Sta. Rosa, Laguna.
Artificial turfs on football fields have been built in Bonifacio Global City and, recently, in McKinley Hill in Taguig City.
Meanwhile, Garcia said that the PSC plans to convert the baseball field into artificial turf so that softball can also be played without damaging the field.
“Ang baseball, pwede ka maglaro sa dalawang softball field, walang mamamatay na damo. If you notice, sa softball, namamatay ’yung damo kapag tinatapakan. Sa artificial turf, wala nang patay na damo,” Garcia said.
The Philsports track oval, athletes quarters, and gyms in Pasig City will also be renovated, according to Garcia.