Game Changer: Women Win Big At Expanded Netball-Hockey Centre

14 July 2021

New courts and pitches at the transformed Victorian home of netball and hockey are helping thousands of players – ranging from tiny juniors to towering national representatives – be their best.

Opened today by Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula, the remade Melbourne Sports Centres - Parkville hosts more than 500,000 players and spectators each year – and 80 per cent of all participants are women and girls.

A $64.6 million Andrews Labor Government investment has delivered six new indoor netball courts, a new indoor hockey pitch, hot and cold recovery pools, a creche for parents playing at the centre, and a high-performance strength and conditioning gym at the sports mecca formerly known as the State Netball and Hockey Centre.

With 64 lineal kilometres of timber sports flooring laid, the netball arm of the centre now has 11 indoor courts – creating greater capacity for year-round play. The new indoor hockey court similarly provides more opportunities and pathways for players.

With Netball Victoria, Super Netball’s Melbourne Vixens, Hockey Victoria and dozens of grassroots hockey and netball teams based at the centre, the new facilities will open up the venue for more community participation, high-performance excellence, competitions and major events.

The works have also created a new northern entrance, better connecting the centre to public transport.

More than 150 jobs were created during construction and the Labor Government encouraged contractor Kane Constructions to maximise the female presence on the project. These efforts included a pilot program to encourage women and girls to consider a career in construction while half of Kane Constructions’ and Development Victoria’s project teams were female.

At the peak of construction, some 26,000 hours were worked by women, equal to 30 per cent of all contributing hours worked during that time. In total, 73 women worked on the redevelopment site in trade and support roles. About 93 per cent of labour and materials were sourced under the Government’s Local Jobs First Policy.

The expanded centre will also allow for more use by volleyball, basketball, futsal, badminton and table tennis players and will be home to the Women in Sport Leadership Centre.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula

“This reimagined centre will benefit thousands of women and girls who come to Parkville each week to compete and hone their skills in the games they love.”

“This was an ambitious project and it’s going to pay big dividends for players, clubs and supporters for many years.”

Quote attributable to Netball Victoria chief executive Rosie King

“We are thrilled to open a new chapter of the sport in Victoria – we thank the Victorian Government for their investment in women’s sport.”

Quote attributable to Hockey Victoria chief executive Andrew Skillern

“The new high-performance facilities provide an opportunity for women and girls all around Victoria to develop, thrive and contribute to our global standings in world hockey.”

Reviewed 13 July 2021

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