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State government commits $1.5 million to Murray Bridge basketball stadium
The funding will help the local association grow, and other indoor sports to grow with it.
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Murray Bridge’s basketball association hopes a new indoor stadium will help it stem the flow of talent to better-equipped competitions in the Adelaide Hills.
Construction of the new facility at Murray Bridge Showground should begin within months after the state government last week committed $1.5 million to the project.
The federal government had already promised $1.9 million, and the city’s council will stump up the remaining $500,000.
The stadium will sit somewhere between the basketball association’s existing courts and the showground’s oval, allowing a nearby RV-friendly area to keep operating.
The Murray Bridge council’s assessment panel will be asked to approve the development in the near future.
Mayor Brenton Lewis said construction would start “as soon as possible”.
He hoped a variety of local sporting groups would be able to make use of the stadium.
However, it’s the basketball association that currently uses the existing courts every night of the week, and has to turn teams away from its annual October carnival because of a lack of playing space.
“It’s certainly (going to be) a big help,” association vice president Dean Rossiter said.
“We struggle to fit in everything, let alone other sports.
“It will be good to get it in there and keep (basketball) growing, to get more kids in.”
About 550 people play basketball in Murray Bridge – more than football or netball.
State MP Adrian Pederick welcomed the investment, saying sporting clubs were vital to people’s physical and mental wellbeing.
The state funding will come regardless of who wins the upcoming election, as it was granted through the Office for Recreation, Sport and Racing's grassroots facilities program for 2021-22.
The program will require the facility to be finished within two years.