The Federal Minister for Veteran’s Affairs Mr Alan Griffin on behalf of The Hon. Anthony Albanese MP Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government today announced a grant of $7 million towards the construction of a new State Basketball Centre in the City of Knox.
The project will now receive funding in the amount of $14 million from both Federal and State Governments.
Basketball Victoria CEO Wayne Bird said “This is further recognition of our sports importance in the Victorian community and we thank both the Federal and State Governments for their support of our continually growing sport”.
“Facilities are important for all sports and we applaud the efforts of the Knox City Council and Knox Basketball Association for their collaboration and initial planning of this project”.
The $27.65 million project, which is being managed by the Knox City Council, will provide a centre for basketball and soccer. It will also serve as a first-class sporting facility for the eastern region of Melbourne and surrounding areas.
The State Basketball Centre will also serve as the headquarters of Basketball Victoria and Knox Basketball Inc and help encourage development of professional and recreational basketball.
Basketball Victoria gets new headquarters
The Minister for Sport & Recreation James Merlino today announced funding of $7 million dollars will be allocated in Tuesday's State budget for the development of a new State Basketball Centre. The State Basketball Centre will be located in an exciting new sports precinct to be located in High Street Road adjacent to Eastlink.
Basketball Victoria CEO Wayne Bird said, “This is great news for our sport and is recognition of the importance of basketball in the Victorian community. We thank the Minister and his department for their untiring efforts in gaining this funding in such difficult times.”
Mr Bird commented further that, “The Knox City Council and Knox Basketball Association have been working on a development plan for over three years, the opportunity of this including the State Basketball Centre was first discussed between the parties almost eighteen months ago. Since then all parties have worked in close collaboration to bring this project to fruition. Basketball Victoria is most grateful to both Knox City Council and Knox Basketball Association for their foresight and preparedness to consider this major development for our sport.”
The Council has also applied for Federal Government funding for the project and we expect to hear the outcome of that submission prior to the release of the Federal Budget.
The end objective is to build a twelve-court centre including a large capacity show court suitable for staging international events. Stage one will be a minimum six courts plus a show court. Both Basketball Victoria (including the VJBL, Big V staff) and the Knox Basketball Association will be located at the State Basketball Centre. We are also looking into the possibility of including the SEABL office in the centre as well.
Lindsay Gaze said that, “Today will be remembered as a significant date in basketballs history with this announcement.” Recounting that since the old Albert Park complex closure Basketball Victoria had been pursuing its own home for over a decade.
It is estimated 350 jobs will be created during the construction phase and over 50 permanent positions once the State Basketball centre is opened.
The work now begins in earnest for the project team as final designs and requirements for the precinct are decided.