A $4 million federal government grant will help transform the Lavington Sportsground redevelopment into a regional facility capable of hosting major sporting points for games events across codes.
Albury mayor Kevin Mack said the money would help bring the facility into the 21st century.
He said the redevelopment would bring the facility up to the minimum standard required to host NRL, AFL, AFLW, Big Bash and rugby union games.
“It is going to be brought up to the point where it is a regional facility which services high level sport and elite sport,” he said.
“What started off as a $10 million project probably went back to $8.5 million and is now at $11.5 million.
“This project will give us the money to expand our corporate areas, our meeting areas, our grandstand and our coaches and media boxes.”
Cr Mack said they hoped to received a further $3 million from the state government.
He said a priority for the ground was installing lights.
“We’re in discussions with our Big Bash partners, the Thunder and the Stars, to look at hosting a game for points in the future and to do that we either need to have a day game or we need the flexibility of having lights to service that need,” he said.
“The next cab off the rank is the lighting of this venue and significantly needs a significant upgrade we’re upgrading the power source to the ground for that capacity to be increased so 1500 lux lights would be a wishlist.”
Cr Mack said stadium deals across Australia were unreasonable and too expensive, so in future organisations would be looking for regional facilities to host games.
He said the grandstand and amenities tender would be put out in June or July.
Minister for Regional Development John McVeigh said social infrastructure like the sporting ground was significant to communities.
He said decentralisation would only increase its significance.
“We believe that the future growth of Australia is going to ride on the shoulders of regional Australia,” he said.
“It can’t just happen in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and other capital cities it's got to happen here in regional Australia.”