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WACA unveils ground improvement plans

The Western Australian Cricket Association has unveiled the final schematic designs of the WACA Ground Improvement Project.

This marks a huge milestone in its vision to transform the iconic venue into a sustainable community and sporting hub with cricket at its heart.

The WACA has wasted no time in bringing its vision for the much-loved ground to life, having taken significant steps forward in the planning phase of the Project after securing A$30 million funding commitments from both the Federal and WA Governments respectively as well as A$4 million from Cricket Australia.

The final schematic design sees the home of cricket in WA become a sustainable boutique 10,000-capacity community and sporting destination that will bring the East Perth precinct to life and also reflect and incorporate the rich history of the ground.

The Inverarity and Prindiville stands will be removed to make way for one central pavilion on the northern end of the ground, which will incorporate a number of key community amenities to be utilised by the public all year-round.

These designs make way for a seven-day operating café, revitalised modern WACA Ground museum, community health club, sports medicine and rehabilitation centre, all-abilities playground and a sensory room for the public – reinforcing the WACA’s commitment to the ground becoming a community venue and must-see tourist destination.

It is intended that the early works will commence prior to the beginning of the 2021-22 cricket season, with anticipated completion scheduled for early 2024.

The project will deliver enhanced high-performance facilities for cricket and other sports, including a world-class 10-lane indoor cricket and multi-sport centre, high-performance gym for the State cricket programmes, as well as home and match-day changerooms and recovery facilities.

The oval will also be lengthened to accommodate Australian Rules Football and other sports while the Lillee-Marsh Stand, Players’ Pavilion and South West Pavilion will be retained for its remaining useful life, as well as the east and west grass banks.

The WACA remains in discussions with the City of Perth and State and Federal Governments around the integration of an aquatic facility which includes a six-lane 50-metre pool, learn to swim pool and leisure slide within the overall Project design.

The WACA said it is committed to working with the City of Perth to provide an outstanding facility for the Perth community and one that offers a point of difference to all other aquatic facilities in the State.

The Project Working Group and Steering Committee, established by the WACA to govern the Project, will continue to lead the Project as it enters Stage 3 which involves detailed design and procurement.

The Project, including the inclusion of a community aquatic centre, is part of a A$1.5 billion Perth City Deal signed by the Federal and State Governments and the City of Perth.

Minister for Planning Hon Rita Saffioti MLA said:

The Project will add amenity and vibrancy to East Perth and the wider Perth CBD. The WACA Ground itself will become a fantastic community facility, complete with a long-desired aquatic centre and new recreational space for the growing population.

Minister for Sport and Recreation the Hon Dr Tony Buti MLA said:

Perth will benefit from a versatile new facility that could be used for community events, sporting fixtures and improving the general well-being of local residents.

Not only will the WACA Ground continue to be a destination for cricket and other sports, but as a facility for the wider community that can be enjoyed year-round.

Cricket Australia Interim CEO Nick Hockley said:

It is incredibly exciting to see the WACA Ground Improvement Project take its next step with the unveiling of the plans for the precinct.

This will be a truly world-class facility that will greatly benefit cricket in the West and Australian Cricket more generally.

WACA Ground Improvement Project will deliver:

  • 10-lane indoor cricket and multi-sport facility
  • Central pavilion with food and beverage outlets
  • A multi-purpose function centre with outside deck overlooking WACA Ground
  • Dedicated high performance facilities for elite players, including gym, change rooms and recovery facilities
  • Community health club
  • Public café
  • Auditorium and multi-purpose meeting rooms available for community use
  • Lengthening of oval to accommodate other sports
  • Museum that honours the rich history of the Ground
  • Reduced capacity Ground with new shade solutions
  • Community sports medicine and rehabilitation centre
  • Provision of new office amenities for WACA staff
  • Sensory room
  • All abilities playground (TBC)
  • Childcare facility (TBC)
  • An aquatic facility, including a 50m pool, learn to swim pool and water leisure slides (TBC)

Images courtesy of WACA