$10M for sports precinct

An elected Shorten Labor Government will invest $10 million in stages one and two of the Macedon Ranges Regional Sports Precinct.
Shadow Minister for Sport Senator Don Farrell made the commitment at the New Gisborne site before an excited crowd on Friday with local Federal MPs Rob Mitchell and Lisa Chesters.
The project evolved from a community push to alleviate the strain on sporting facilities across the district with clubs forced to battle for local court time.
Stage one and two includes a new all-weather synthetic oval and new natural grass oval, four indoor sports courts, two tennis/netball courts, three cricket nets, multi-purpose community spaces, changerooms and other facilities.
Mr Mitchell said the project supported many sporting groups and was a prime example of people with different ideas and views coming together for the greater good of the community.
“This is going to be more than just a sporting precinct. It’s going to be a fantastic place for the community to come together and give kids opportunities,” Mr Mitchell said.
Sports precinct campaigner Megan Condron said the project had unwavering community support and would create a positive ripple effect for the region.
“Our volunteers share a passion and that is that sport is so much more than just a game,” Ms Condron said.
“[The sports precinct] provides a platform for the community to help raise our children, provides role models and leadership opportunities for all ages and it connects people to their community.”
The precinct is expected to support an extra 245,000 uses of the facilities annually, opportunities to host large-scale competitions and $59 million in regional economic benefits from construction and flow-on effects.
Fellow sports precinct supporter Helen Sankey said Labor’s commitment was “a big tick” in progressing the project that would address growth in the region.
“As community members and families we’re always trying to play catch-up with our facilities, so an announcement like that is fabulous,” Ms Sankey said.
The senator’s announcement followed a visit to the region about six months ago, shortly after the state government’s election commitment of $11.6 million towards the project.

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