Games con­cept lauded

The Tatura Guardian - - News - By Bar­clay White

The vi­sion was big, but the de­tails were light at the of­fi­cial launch of the wild­card pro­posal for a re­gional Vic­to­rian bid for the 2030 Com­mon­wealth Games at Vic­to­ria Park Lake last week.

In­stead of any de­tailed cost­ings or a com­pelling case study, peo­ple were asked to be­lieve in the con­cept, and leave the de­tail for later.

With any po­ten­tial bid, or de­ci­sion on a host city or re­gion still years away, Greater Shep­par­ton Mayor Dinny Adem said it was the con­cept of a re­gional bid that needed to be sold be­fore the num­ber crunch­ing started.

‘‘What we are un­veil­ing is a first-of-a-kind vi­sion that could very well form the blue­print for fu­ture ma­jor sport­ing events,’’ Cr Adem said.

‘‘With Dur­ban be­ing stripped of the rights to host the 2022 Games over fi­nan­cial con­cerns, al­ter­na­tive mod­els needed to be ex­plored and we be­lieve we have the an­swer.’’

The pitch is to use the most of ex­ist­ing re­gional in­fra­struc­ture that is cur­rently spread out across Vic­to­ria, in­stead of the usual Com­mon­wealth and Olympics prac­tice of build­ing mas­sive sta­di­ums in a singe city, that be­come white ele­phants at the end of the event.

Dif­fer­ent ar­eas in re­gional Vic­to­ria could play to their in­di­vid­ual strengths and we could see Lawn Bowls held at Shep­par­ton Park Bowls Club and Row­ing at Lake Nagam­bie.

But or­gan­is­ers were keen to point out that any pro­posed sport­ing venues are just sug­ges­tions and any­thing could hap­pen be­fore an ac­tual bid is placed.

Even the lo­ca­tion of the open­ing and clos­ing cer­e­monies, one of the most im­por­tant as­pect of any games, was still un­cer­tain ac­cord­ing to Adem Karafili, chair of the 13-mem­ber bid task­force.

He said that Kar­dinia Park in Gee­long, which hosts the Gee­long Foot­ball Club, would be the sim­ple choice, but not the only op­tion.

‘‘I think we would love to have one here as well and I think part of our plan­ning would be to es­tab­lish an arena in Shep­par­ton that sup­ports this greater area that could host an open­ing cer­e­mony,’’ Mr Karafili said.

‘‘Our am­bi­tion would be here (in Shep­par­ton), but we also have a fall­back po­si­tion.’’

Pic­tures: Holly Cur­tis

Dream big: Chair of the 13-mem­ber bid task­force Adem Karafili ad­dresses the au­di­ence.

We can do it: The bid task­force.

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