Hull KR urged to rejoin talks on Craven Park's North Stand
AN OLIVE branch has been extended to Hull KR after angry club officials complained about the "shambolic" development of their new £8m North Stand.
The Robins pulled out of a joint steering group overseeing the project amid continued delays that will prevent the stand being used this season.
Rovers also raised concerns about design failings which saw the new stand's exterior cladding installed in blue.
Now Councillor Daren Hale, deputy leader of Hull City Council and steering group chairman, has called for KR to come back to the table.
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He said: "I've personally had a good relationship with the club and I don't see that changing.
"We will seek a meeting with the club and continue to meet with them, because clearly the best place to have these discussions is around a table.
"We need to get the stand finished and I think once it's finished a lot of these issues will go away."
Cllr Hale acknowledged the colour of the stand's cladding was an error.
He said the council and its partners would discuss it at a meeting on Monday.
Cllr Hale said: "Most of the changes to the design have been signed off by all parties, including the club.
"The big difference seems to be the colour of the stand, which I believe was a mistake.
"It's not finished yet and only when the seats go in will you get the measure of what the stadium's going to look like."
Cllr Hale will not be at Monday's meeting, which will instead be chaired by council leader Steve Brady.
But he said there would be discussions about "rectifying the colour" of the cladding.
The row went public on Wednesday, when KR chairman Neil Hudgell shared his concerns with the Mail.
At the time, he said: "The whole development of the North Stand has been shambolic from the start and at present we are in danger of missing a great opportunity of providing a great facility not just for Rovers, but also for east Hull.
"We are heading down the route of ending up with a glorified office block for the majority of the year, used 13 times a year for fans to use a couple of thousand seats."
Mr Hudgell claimed delays the development had cost his club between £750,000 and £1m in the past 12 months.
Mr Hudgell pointed to a six-month delay between the first and second tender submissions in 2011, caused because the chosen bidder was found to be £1m short in its estimated costings, as the start of the problems.
He said: "Without doubt, the poor management of this project from day one has cost us hugely as a club."
The club yesterday declined to comment further.
The project is being managed by NPS, a development company part-owned by the council and selected at a cost of £650,000, despite having no stadium development experience.
The company also declined to comment.