Funding confirmed for regional athletics facility

Released on 05 February 2018
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MEDIA RELEASE

The City of Salisbury has been granted $995,000 for a new regional athletics facility at Bridgestone Reserve through the State Government Sporting Surfaces Program.

The $995,000 funding announcement by Hon Leon Bignell MP on Saturday 3 February 2018 will enable the development of a new regional athletics facility at Bridgestone Reserve to cater for the sport’s booming participation rates both locally and across Adelaide.

South Australia currently has one facility - the Athletics SA Stadium at Mile End – and no regional level athletics facilities. However, Athletics SA memberships are tracking towards a 30-year high and more than 3,200 Little Athletics members live within a 25km radius of Bridgestone Reserve – further highlighting the need for such a facility.

Mayor Gillian Aldridge says more than 10,000 visitors a year are projected to use the facility including schools, athletics clubs, and participants at regional carnivals, competitions and events. “We are a growing community with a growing appetite for sporting and recreational opportunities,” Mayor Aldridge said.

“The new athletics facility supports our ongoing Salisbury City Centre Renewal Strategy, which includes projects such as the proposed City Centre Community Hub and the Salisbury Oval Precinct Redevelopment – positioning Salisbury at the heart of health, sport and recreation in the North.”

 Northern Districts Athletics Club President Jenni Dansie says her club will be first in line to relocate to the new premises. “Moving to this top class facility will ensure our membership continues to grow,” she said.  “The new track will lead to more athletic participation for our members from recreation to elite level, and give these athletes a chance to participate on the best facilities in South Australia.”

“The proposal is one of the most significant in South Australian athletics history and provides a platform for Athletics SA to expand its event offerings and further increase participation, which has grown by 46% in the past three seasons,” said Athletics SA Chief Executive Officer Adam Bishop.

SA Little Athletics Association Chief Executive Officer Sue Bowman described the proposal as “fundamental to the future growth of Little Athletics”.  “This long awaited project will be a propitious asset to the sport of Little Athletics in SA, benefitting not only Little Athletics in the Northern suburbs but the wider South Australian athletics community,” she said. “It will certainly encourage some of SA’s youngest to participate in a grassroots sport and in turn provide thousands the opportunity to lead healthy and active lifestyles.”