The multi-purpose sport and recreation facility with four indoor sport courts and upgraded facilities for resident sporting clubs and casual users will be one of the City's largest-ever investments in sporting infrastructure. The indoor sport courts will cater principally for netball and basketball, providing a much-needed community asset for local clubs, schools and associations.
Why we need more indoor courts
Participation statistics from the Australian Sports Commission (refer page 16) indicate that netball and basketball are the fourth and seventh most popular participation sports in Australia.
A 2015 needs analysis into demand for additional multi-court indoor facilities in Stonnington clearly showed a shortage of indoor court space. Stadiums in nearby municipalities are at capacity and Stonnington needed at least four more courts to meet current demand.
As part of the 2017 feasibility study, a report by consultants Otium Planning Group(PDF, 2MB) assessed the demand for indoor courts and the feasibility of the proposed development, management and operation of a four-court stadium at Percy Treyvaud Memorial Park. Their report found that lack of available indoor courts, current high occupancy level of existing facilities, participation growth, predicted population growth rate and anticipated demand for basketball and netball supported the future provision of additional indoor sports courts.
Giving women fairer access to sporting facilities
According to a 2016 VicHealth research report, increased participation by community members is more likely in local government areas with a high availability of sports facilities.
Participation in organised sport contributes to a healthy Stonnington, with 37 per cent of those interviewed in the 2015 VicHealth Indicators Survey reporting they participate in organised sport. This is significantly higher than the Victorian average of 29 per cent.
Women and girls deserve modern, safe, welcoming and inclusive sporting facilities, and a new indoor facility is required to meet the needs of sports such as netball and basketball, popular among women and girls.
Long-established sports such as Australian rules football and cricket have dominated the use of Stonnington’s sporting facilities while sports such as netball and basketball, which are more popular among females, have historically had access to fewer facilities.
More indoor courts in Stonnington is an important step towards improving equity of access to sporting facilities, and will ensure residents have access to high-quality, purpose-built recreational facilities.