Well-maintained sports grounds, ovals and parks are synonymous with successful, progressive city councils.
For the Maitland City Council in the Lower Hunter Valley of NSW, the opportunity to improve the quality and aesthetics of its main ovals and playing fields while lifting workforce productivity was an irresistible combination.
In February this year, the Council purchased three new Toro commercial mowers – a Groundsmaster 360 Quad Steer, a Groundsmaster Contour 4700 and a Reelmaster 5510 from local dealer, Scone Outdoors.
The mowers replaced two earlier model Toro mowers which had reached the end of their working life.
The Council’s Coordinator of Recreation and Noxious Weeds, Brian Worboys, said cylinder reel mowers had been chosen because they provided a better quality mow and more aesthetically pleasing finish to the Council’s main cricket and rugby league grounds.
“Our key objectives in getting the new equipment were to improve the quality of the sports grounds and lift productivity,” he said.
Since we took delivery of the new mowers, we have seen significant improvement in the overall cut, finish and aesthetics of the sports grounds.
“The rollers on the back of the mowers have helped flatten out minor lumps and bumps and create a smoother surface, while the rollers also flatten out the grass itself. This enables our grounds people to create the patterns on playing surfaces which are a feature of leading sports grounds around the world.
Our local sporting clubs are very pleased with the results so far.”
The Maitland City Council has 58 hectares of parks with 48 sports fields across 32 sporting facilities, providing facilities for sports including cricket, soccer, rugby league and baseball. Of these, seven are high quality fields with grandstands and lighting.
Mr Worboys said that because the new mowers were highly versatile and significantly more powerful than the machines they replaced, the Council was also getting the increased productivity it had sought.
Cooper Wright, Manager Sales and Business Development from Scone Outdoors said the new mowers gave Maitland Council the same quality of machinery used on international sporting arenas.
“The Groundsmaster 360 Quad-steer is really the next generation of mower in terms of efficiency and stability,” he said.
It has four wheel steering, a 183 cm (72 inch) cutting width and a zero turn capacity which allows it to outperform other mowers in its class.
“The Groundsmaster Contour 4700 Contour mower has a seven deck rotary cut floating platform that provides the highest level of cut over a variety of terrains and is designed for large areas, while the Reelmaster 5510 is another specialist reel mower designed for high quality cut and after cut appearance.”
Mr Wright said the Toro mowers provided Maitland with the machinery it needed to lift its main playing fields to the highest level of preparation.
“It was a pleasure working with Toro Australia and Maitland City Council on this project as we all wanted to achieve high results in grounds appearance and working productivity,” he said.
"These new machines are delivering those results.”