La Trobe University has today unveiled a FIFA-1 standard and accredited synthetic football pitch at its Melbourne campus in Bundoora.
Vice Chancellor Professor John Dewar said the opening of the new pitch marks the first phase of a significant development for Melbourne’s North.
“The La Trobe Sports Park will ultimately cover 60 hectares. Our next major development to be completed at the end of 2019 will include world-class sport science and analytics research and teaching laboratories, an education and training centre, six high ball indoor courts, and dedicated office accommodation for local, state and national sport organisations,” Professor Dewar said.
“It’s a vital element in our long term investment plan for the Bundoora campus that will see us team with local councils and industry to drive jobs and economic development in Melbourne’s North.”
University students and community users were first to officially use the pitch, participating in a special training session hosted by Melbourne City Football Club coaches Warren Joyce and Rado Vidosic.
Professor John Dewar cut the ribbon that kick-started celebrations.
“It’s great to see our students and local clubs utilising this fantastic resource for play, performance, teaching and research,” Professor Dewar said.
“I’m confident this pitch will immediately provide more sporting opportunities not only for students, but for the local community. As a football fan myself, I’m looking forward to seeing some of the many great sporting events set to take place here.”
Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research Development) and Director of La Trobe Sport, Professor Russ Hoye said the pitch was located adjacent to a new Australian Rules Football and cricket oval, and a new pavilion with female-friendly change rooms and club spaces to support the University’s cricket, AFL and baseball clubs, as well as Preston Baseball Club. The oval and pavilion are currently under construction and will be completed by the end of 2018.
“Our goal is to become the preferred university for tertiary sport studies, sport research, sport performance and participation, as well as industry collaboration for innovation in sport and is all part of our strong research and educational focus on health and wellness.”
The La Trobe Sports Park plan was developed in consultation with local councils and state government departments and agencies, internal University stakeholders and national, state and local sport organisations.
The synthetic pitch will be open to the public in mid-July.
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