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Federal MP Darren Chester says progress on the multi-million dollar redevelopment of the WORLD Sporting Precinct is welcome news for sports clubs in Bairnsdale and local businesses.

East Gippsland Shire Council has called for tenders to undertake work on the first stage of the $10.7 million redevelopment project.

Mr Chester said the project would provide a welcome boost for local jobs as East Gippsland continued its recovery from the drought, summer bushfires and the coronavirus recession.

“This redevelopment is among the biggest infrastructure projects in East Gippsland at the moment,” Mr Chester said.

“The work being undertaken at the site is significant in terms of the valuable business opportunities it will bring for local contractors and suppliers.

“We need to get this government money into East Gippsland to support local businesses and local jobs as soon as we can.

“The current sporting facilities are normally used by hundreds of girls and women each week, so the new facilities will also be an important investment in infrastructure that will support our community’s health and connectedness.”

The redevelopment includes an upgraded pavilion for hockey players and netballers, new lighting and amenities for the main hockey pitch and an eight-court regional level netball facility. There’ll also be a new soccer complex with two pitches with lights and a dedicated pavilion.

When the work is done, the precinct will be used by more than 750 netballers, 630 soccer players and 50 hockey players from the Bairnsdale Netball Association, the Bairnsdale Hockey Club, Gippsland United Football Club and Bairnsdale Soccer Club (futsal).

In June, Mr Chester announced the Federal Government would split the cost of the project with the East Gippsland Shire Council.

“This redevelopment will help Bairnsdale to meet the growing need for quality sport facilities in East Gippsland to cater for growing demand and encourage girls and women to get involved in local sport and stay active,” Mr Chester said.

A mandatory tender briefing will be held on site at 10am on Tuesday, October 20. Tenders close at 12pm on November 4.

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