North East Link sport upgrades kick off

North East Link’s $68 million investment in local sporting clubs has kicked off with construction now underway on three major upgrades.

Works have started at Ford Park, Binnak Park, Veneto Club and Greensborough College, ensuring the new and upgraded facilities will be ready in time for the 2021 AFL season.

More than 20,000 players from 31 sporting clubs and associations will benefit from this massive package of upgrades.

Six new pavilions will be built across the north east and major upgrades at 19 grounds will give football, soccer and cricket clubs better grounds, increased lighting and female-friendly facilities.

North East Link’s sports ground upgrades will lay 13 MCGs worth of new turf and create 450 jobs as part of the 10,000 jobs that Victoria’s biggest road infrastructure project will support.

Works at Greensborough College were first to get underway, with upgrades to include a natural turf AFL and cricket oval with new lighting and behind-goal netting, a new pavilion with female-friendly change rooms, a synthetic turf cricket pitch and a new FIFA certified synthetic soccer pitch.

The Yarra Junior Football League will join Ford Park’s other users, Bellfield Cricket Club and Ivanhoe Junior Football Club, when the first round of upgrades are complete in mid-2021.

Ford Park upgrades include overhauling the existing southern oval with a reconstructed sports field and lighting, a new pavilion, boundary fence, timekeepers box and electronic scoreboard, behind goal netting and shelters for players and officials; as well as construction of new synthetic turf cricket nets next to the northern oval.

There will also be more car park spaces, new public exercise stations, a multiuse public basketball and futsal court and play equipment.

Plenty Valley Cricket Club and Watsonia Sporting Club will join Binnak Park’s other users, Parade St Damian’s Junior Football Club, when the upgrades are complete in mid-2021.

The works at Binnak Park will feature an upgraded natural turf AFL and cricket oval, electronic scoreboard, behind goal netting, a new pavilion, shelters for players and officials, upgraded lighting, synthetic turf cricket nets, new concrete footpath surrounding the oval and more car parks.

Works are also now underway to upgrade facilities at Veneto Club which will include a new synthetic soccer pitch, lighting and change rooms.