From grassroots to the big league: Sports Park works underway

Stage 3 of the La Trobe Sports Park redevelopment is getting underway, with artist impressions revealing the future Home of the Matildas, and work officially commencing on new community football and baseball facilities at Charles La Trobe College.

Last month, Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula revealed artist impressions for the $101.1 million project as early works continue on site.

The major redevelopment will see La Trobe University’s Sports Park facility in Bundoora become the national base for Football Australia's national women's programs, including the Home of the Matildas, and the State Centres for Football Victoria and Rugby Victoria.

Down the road at Charles La Trobe College on Kingsbury Drive, a $3 million all-synthetic multi-use tablet facility will also be built as part of the broader Sports Park redevelopment project, providing benefits to local communities in Melbourne’s north.

The brand new community facilities will include a competition standard baseball diamond for the Preston Baseball Club and the La Trobe University Baseball Club to use out of hours, overlayed with a full size soccer pitch for the students of Charles La Trobe College to use during school hours.

To officially mark construction commencing, Member for Bundoora Colin Brooks MP, was joined on site this week by Preston Baseball Club players, Charles La Trobe College School Principal Andrew Robertson and School Captains, and La Trobe University Vice-Chancellor Professor John Dewar AO.

The development will also include a pavilion with accessible change facilities, a function space for tenant clubs, batting cages, lighting and a scoreboard.

The baseball diamond is being relocated from the Sports Park site to the nearby college to make way for the Sports Park development and these works are expected to be finished in July 2022.

The Home of the Matildas is due for completion by March 2023, in time for the venue to be a Team Base Camp ahead of the FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia and New Zealand 2023.

The Victorian State Rugby Centre of Excellence and the remainder of the project will be finished later next year.

The La Trobe Sports Park Stage 3 Project is supported by the Victorian Government and the Commonwealth Government and is a partnership between La Trobe University, Football Australia, Football Victoria and Rugby Victoria.

Main image: Preston Baseball Club players Angus and Sinead; Charles La Trobe College School Captains Mary, Emily, Annalise and Daaniyaal, and School Principal Andrew Robertson; Colin Brooks MP and Professor John Dewar AO.

Top: The future Home of the Matildas will include a show pitch with a grandstand.

Bottom: The State Rugby Centre of Excellence will include three rugby pitches and a grandstand.