Rugby league in Victoria will take a major step forward with a $12 million centre of excellence set to be built at Seabrook Reserve in Broadmeadows.
The new home for rugby league in Victoria is part of a State Government multi-million dollar initiative announced today by chair of the Broadmeadows Revitalisation Board and local MP Frank McGuire.
The features of the development include a show pitch, three community access competition pitches, a pavilion and car parking.
The centre will be the new administration base for NRL Victoria - which is currently based with Melbourne Storm at AAMI Park - and will remain the home for local club Northern Thunder.
Touch Football Victoria will relocate its home base from Albert Park to the new facility.
It is also slated as the home for any future Melbourne Storm team in the NRLW competition. Storm is currently considering the expression of interest document supplied by the NRL, which is looking to expand the women's competition.
NRL Victoria general manager Brent Silva said: "This facility at Seabrook Reserve will not only be a home and facility for everyone in the rugby league community to benefit from, it will also be an exciting feature and facility for use by the local community.
"This centre will allow us to develop and nurture talented young men and women, boys and girls to follow their sporting dreams and also assist us to deliver community programs on this site."
Storm CEO Dave Donaghy said the centre would deliver programs ranging from grassroots to elite for both men and women, significantly enhancing the chances of creating more home grown rugby league stars.
"Storm is proud to be part of such a fantastic partnership," he said.
"We have seen great growth across the board for Melbourne Storm and NRL Victoria in recent years and a project like this one is going to further add to the growth of the game, as well as being an exciting new asset for the Broadmeadows community."
The Victorian Government has allocated $12 million to the rugby league state training and community centre, which is part of Hume City Council's master plan to revamp Seabrook Reserve.
There have also been financial commitments from Melbourne Storm and the NRL.
Among the guests at this morning's announcement were Donaghy, Storm NRL squad member Christian Welch, representatives from NRL Victoria and officials and juniors from the Northern Thunder.