The Victorian Government joined Cricket Victoria and Cricket Australia today to launch the community consultation process for the proposed $40 million development of the Victorian Cricket and Community Centre at Junction Oval.
In December 2014, the Andrews Labor Government announced a $25 million commitment to the project with funding fast tracked to enable works to commence as soon as possible.
New designs, a fly through animation and a timeline of milestones were released today for the Port Phillip community to provide feedback on the centre, before works commence.
The purpose-built facility will consolidate Victorian Cricket's administration and training functions into a single location, as well as providing a boutique-sized alternate first-class venue for the sport in Victoria. This will provide cricket with its first dedicated training and development facility in the state.
The project will see Junction Oval enhanced as a year round training, match, and cricket development venue. The project involves considerable investment into the enhancement of the Junction Oval site to improve functionality and amenity for both the cricket and the general community.
Speaking at the launch, Victorian Minister for Sport, The Hon. John Eren said; "We promised our cricketers a world-class venue they can call their own and we're getting on with it. Our first class champions deserve the best facilities."
"Cricket participation is higher in Victoria than any other state, and we're ensuring we give the game the resources it needs to grow."
Cricket Victoria CEO, Tony Dodemaide said he was looking forward to Junction Oval becoming a vibrant community hub.
"This new first class cricket ground will help address Victoria's comparative disadvantage to other states, enabling us to regularly attract and host major cricket events that will not only entertain and inspire cricket lovers but generate strong ongoing economic benefit," said Mr Dodemaide.
"The vision - and now the design for the Victorian Cricket and Community Centre, is expansive. It will see the creation of a home for Victorian cricket, a desperately needed new first class ground and state of the art training, playing and administration facilities.
"We'd like to express our sincere thanks to the Victorian Government and we're looking forward to working with the community to make this the best cricket and community facility in the nation," concluded Mr Dodemaide.
In addition to supporting the State's elite teams, the Victorian Cricket and Community Centre facility will provide benefit to a diverse range of users including women's cricket; multicultural and indigenous communities; physically and intellectually disabled participants; and the general public.
Cox Architecture has been appointed to lead the project, with works to commence by the end of the year. Cox Architecture has designed a number of sporting infrastructure projects, including the MCG's Northern Stand, Adelaide Oval and AAMI Park. Construction will create jobs and strengthen Victoria's economy.
Cricket Australia CEO, James Sutherland said this was a major step forward for the growth of cricket in Australia
"Putting these designs forward for community consultation marks an important step forward in this project which create a world-class cricket hub, not only for the State and National players, but for grass roots clubs," Mr Sutherland said.
"Community cricket is the lifeblood of our game. However, in today's day and age we need to work harder than ever before to maintain cricket's health, and it's for that reason we're enormously grateful for the support the Victorian Government to Junction Oval, and also unprecedented support to Community Cricket throughout the state."
Under the proposal for community consultation the Junction Oval will become a cricket-only facility. The proposal will see the investment into the site's heritage and new facilities in a village green setting. Public access to the site will be maintained during the daytime for walking, jogging and passive recreation.
To have the opportunity to participate in the consultation on the site, or learn more about the Victorian Cricket and Community Centre project please visit cricketvictoria.com.au/vccc
Construction for the Victorian Cricket and Community Centre is due for completion in time for the 2017-18 season with the project being funded by the Victorian Government, Cricket Australia and Cricket Victoria.