The Victorian Government will invest $25 million into a major redevelopment of Geelong’s Skilled Stadium boosting the venue’s ability to host more major sporting and cultural events in regional Victoria as well as driving job growth in Geelong.
Victorian Premier John Brumby said the redevelopment would see the construction of a new Northern Stand, bringing the ground’s capacity to more than 35,000 and boosting Geelong’s ability to attract major sporting and cultural events for generations to come.
“The new Northern Stand will be a state-of-the art redevelopment and will ensure a thriving future for the Cats at Skilled Stadium and our Government is proud to be supporting it,” the Premier said. “Together we’re taking the first step towards further transforming Skilled Stadium into a world-class facility which will help bolster Geelong as a destination for major events.”
Geelong’s Skilled Stadium will receive a funding boost allowing it to host larger sporting and cultural events.
The Victorian Government will contribute $25 million towards the $75 million project, further building on the recent $6 million contribution for the Premiership Stand. This brings the Government’s total boost for the venue and Geelong Cats beyond $44 million.
“This major contribution is about locking-in the future prosperity of Geelong, the Surf Coast and the Bellarine Peninsula. It will form a key part of our Blueprint for Regional Victoria to be released later this month that will outline new investment to drive our regions forward,” he said.
The Skilled Stadium upgrade will include a 1,000 seat function room suitable for private and corporate functions, a sporting museum, purpose built wellness and education centre, and much more.
Sports Minister James Merlino said increasing the capacity of Skilled Stadium would also better position Geelong to hold a World Cup match, should Australia be successful in its bids for the 2018 or 2022 FIFA World Cup.
“Geelong would make a fantastic location for a FIFA World Cup match. It would be simply magnificent for the prosperity of the region,” Merlino said. “Geelong boasts transport, accommodation and links to world-class tourist destinations like the Great Ocean Road, making it an ideal location for a World Cup event.”
Brumby said he was delighted that Australia’s official bid for the 2018 or 2022 FIFA World Cup features Geelong as a preferred location to host matches, it would put Geelong on the world map and deliver a major jobs and economic boost for the region.