The Canberra Raiders, ACT Government and NSW Government have made an historic announcement today, to fund a new Centre of Excellence at the Raiders spiritual home of Braddon in the ACT.
The $19 Million project will be joint funded by the ACT Government ($5 Million), NSW Government ($4 Million) and the Canberra District Rugby League.
The project will see the Canberra Raiders relocate from Bruce to the Centre of Canberra, with a state of the art facility and community hub, giving the region one of the best facilities in sport in Australia.
Canberra Raiders CEO Don Furner, said the announcement of the new facility would be a huge benefit to the sport of rugby league for not only the ACT but also regional NSW.
"This is a wonderful example of cross-border investment by the ACT and NSW Government's to help provide a wonderful new facility to service the entire region," Mr Furner said. "Children's sport is about providing the best possible pathways and programs and these know no-borders. Children come to us from all regions of both the ACT and NSW to participate in rugby league and we want to afford them the best opportunity to do so."
"We have long regarded ourselves as the NRL's 'country club' and together with the ACT, we recognise and support several outlying regions including Queanbeyan, Goulburn, Cooma, the Hilltops region, the South Coast and the Riverina."
ACT Deputy Chief Minister, Yvette Berry, said this is another important ACT Government investment in Canberra's growing and diversifying economy.
"Providing a state of the art headquarters for one of Canberra's elite sporting teams, combined with new community facilities, in the heart of the city, will enhance the area and provide new opportunities for Canberrans of all ages and abilities to get involved with the sport," Ms Berry said. "In addition to this facility supporting rugby league programs in the ACT it will also support the surrounding NSW regions and this project provides an excellent example of what can be achieved in partnership when governments work together," she said.
NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro said the Centre will comprise of sports and recreation areas, a grassed oval playing area, training areas, adjacent viewing areas, and it will house the Canberra District Rugby League Football Club (CDRL) headquarters and administrative units.
"This facility is set to benefit hundreds of young rugby league players and fans in both southern NSW and the ACT, providing borderless access to high level coaching, training and mentoring support, as well as additional NRL competition and trial games in regional NSW towns," Mr Barilaro said.
"Everyone from under 6's through to adults will have access to carnivals, clinics and training camps and elite game development opportunities - further benefitting the health and well-being of our regional communities."