The Victorian Government on Sunday pledged $12 million in funding toward the approximately $30 million Moorabbin Reserve Redevelopment project.
The State Government’s announcement also paved the way for Kingston Council to confirm its April 2015 resolution to contribute $5 million to the project at the December 14 Ordinary Meeting of Council.
The Government’s funding commitment is a boon for the South Metro Junior Football League (SMJFL) and, more broadly, football in Melbourne’s south eastern suburbs. The redeveloped Moorabbin Reserve will become a true community ‘football hub’ with the capacity to better service the growth demands of Australia’s national game in Melbourne’s south east region.
SMJFL General Manager Jake McCauley expressed the League’s gratitude to both the Victorian Government and the Kingston Council for their contributions.
“On behalf of the SMJFL, we’d like to thank the State Government and the Minister for Bentleigh, Nick Staikos MP, for providing the additional funding that ensures that we have a live project, ” McCauley said.
“Thanks must also go to the Kingston Council for their significant contribution of $5 million.”
The SMJFL, Southern Football Netball League (SFNL) and Sandringham Dragons TAC Cup team will all become co-tenants of the ground-breaking new training and match-day facility, co-located with St Kilda Football Club (AFL and VFL) and with shared access to a range of elite training facilities.
The redeveloped precinct will also feature a second playing oval, which will be a multi-use synthetic playing surface.
The Linton Street complex will also be the home ground venue for the planned standalone St Kilda VFL team in 2018. This will make Moorabbin Reserve the only venue in Victoria to host junior and senior community leagues, a TAC Cup Under-18 Program, a VFL team and an elite AFL training facility.
“This project will provide a unique ‘football hub’ that will be unequaled anywhere else in the country,” McCauley said.
“Moorabbin will represent every level of football participation and the League looks forward to working collaboratively with all project stakeholders to ensure that the ‘football hub’ concept is a success.”
The Moorabbin Reserve Redevelopment will provide great benefit to the league both on and off the field. Off the field, the new Community Pavilion will deliver a central venue for the league to conduct over 50 SMJFL events, meetings, training and information sessions per year, while on the field, the SMJFL will share oval access with the other tenants and will utilise this for pre-season Interleague training, Interleague match days and SMJFL Grand Final days.
McCauley said he was thrilled that the League were able to secure long term tenancy at the new complex as it will greatly assist the competition’s growth and development in the years to come.
“The SMJFL is delighted to secure the league’s long-term future at Moorabbin Reserve. As a project partner, the redevelopment is a fantastic outcome for the League, the 27 member Clubs and the 10,000+ participants, including players and umpires,” McCauley said.
The SMJFL office will be relocated to temporary accommodation in January 2016 for approximately 18 months while construction of the new Moorabbin Reserve facility is undertaken. The relocated SMJFL office location and contact details will be available soon.