The Duler football ground, which belongs to the Goa Football Association (GFA) is one of the oldest and best known grounds in Goa, with a rich historical past.
The GFA started to develop and to improve this ground since 1997, in a phased manner. Recently, they have undertaken an ambitious programme of upgradation of this ground which includes important steps like replacement of grass with astro turf, provision of floodlighting for night play, augmentation of seating capacity of the stadium as well as improvement of the amenities and facilities for players and spectators.
A massive expansion project was prepared for the purpose, under the guidance of the GFA president Mr Shrinivas Dempo, and the Executive Committee, which included construction of additional buildings with total built–up area of about 8600 sq-mt. This will increase the seating capacity of the stadium from present 6000 to 8000, provide adequate amenities and facilities for the players, proper space for the media, matching parking facility to satisfy the demand, and, most importantly, setting up of a Football Academy with state-of-art infrastructure, such as accommodation for players and coaches, auditorium, board room, well-equipped gym, swimming pool, medical facilities, kitchen and dining hall as well as the necessary space for administration and offices.
A substantial commercial component in form of shops and offices – has been incorporated in the project to make it financially viable and self sufficient.
The Project was recently accorded a formal approval (Development Permission) by the North Goa Planning & Development Authority, thanks to the sincere efforts and valuable assistance provided by its Chairman Mr Michael Lobo, who himself is fully committed to the cause of the game which now has been declared as the state sport of Goa.
The project has been prepared by M/S Environmental Planning & Design Consultants, who have been associated with the phase-wise development and improvement of the Duler Football Stadium since its beginning in 1997.
With this approval, Goa Football Association, under the leadership of Mr Shrinivas Dempo and support of the members, now propose to undertake implementation of the project, which will have a far-reaching impact on the upliftment of this most popular sport in Goa. [NT]