Thursday, May 30, 2024

Council to transfer ownership of Launceston stadium to Govt

City of Launceston Council has advertised its intention to transfer the ownership of UTAS Stadium to the new State Government management entity, Stadiums Tasmania.

The Council is expected to make a formal decision on the transfer of ownership early next year.

The decision will include the consideration of any objections received about the intended disposal before Monday December 11, 2023.

Mayor, Matthew Garwood said Council’s management of the stadium was unusual given the size of the facility.

“The City of Launceston developed the York Park (UTAS Stadium) Future Directions Plan in 2021, which explored the best ways to put the stadium on a sustainable and successful path for the future,” Mayor Garwood said.

“Transferring ownership of the stadium to a management authority like Stadiums Tasmania would bring UTAS Stadium into line with other Tier 2 Stadia across the country, which are generally owned by State Governments either directly, or through a Trust or Authority.

“The development of the York Park (UTAS Stadium) Future Directions Plan prompted discussions with the State Government around the transfer of ownership of the stadium to Stadiums Tasmania.

“Following these discussions, the State and Federal Governments have committed more than $130 million in funding for upgrades and expansion of UTAS Stadium in recognition of the venue’s continuing importance as a sporting and entertainment venue — a major investment in our region which would be overseen by Stadiums Tasmania.

“It’s intended that Stadiums Tasmania will bring together a range of experts with specialised skills to grow content at the facilities it manages, including UTAS Stadium.”

The advertising of the Council’s intention to transfer ownership of the stadium follows an endorsement by the Council of a Memorandum of Understanding with the Minister for Stadia and Events, Nic Street on future AFL and AFLW content in Launceston.

Mayor Garwood said the Council had been eager to ensure that UTAS Stadium continued to host at least four AFL matches each year when it was under the management of Stadiums
Tasmania.

“We expect to formally sign the Memorandum of Understanding with the State Government at a ceremony in Launceston next month,” Mayor Garwood said.

“While the Memorandum of Understanding is not legally binding, it represents a clear publicly stated commitment from the parties around their intentions, on top of the legally binding responsibilities outlined in the Stadiums Tasmania Act 2022.

“The Stadiums Tasmania Act 2022 specifies that Stadiums Tasmania must continue to attract and deliver international and national sporting, entertainment and events content across its portfolio of venues, which includes UTAS Stadium.”

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