There is a strong need for a motocross venue in the G21 region to provide a contained, safe and controlled facility for rider education, activities and events.
McAdam Park motocross track, home of Geelong Motocross Club and the Sporting Motorcycle Club, closed in December 2015 following a four-year dispute between riders and residents.
The resulting settlement between Barrabool Rural Protection Group, Barrabool Hills Community Association and landowner Motorcycling Australia leaves the future of recreational motorcycling in the G21 region uncertain, with no current viable alternative proposed.
Without a safe, purpose-built facility operating in a controlled environment that can be managed in a socially responsible and viable way, it is inevitable that riders will resort to public roads, parklands and other community recreational areas to experience their motocross interests. This is a significant safety risk, and is likely to have devastating consequences to the local environment.
The project aims to create a state-of-the-art regional facility that provides a safe and structured environment for people to explore their love of motorcycles and motocross.
An extensive G21 Motocross Land Suitability Assessment was completed in late 2016. The assessment considered the functional needs of motocross riders and the land-use requirements for a regional facility. A number of potential properties were identified, with the best prospects in private ownership.
Motocross tracks require a significant buffer distance to any residential or future growth areas, making it difficult to locate suitable sites.
Sites recommended for further investigation ranged in value from $800,000 to $2.5 million to purchase. Substantial funds in addition to a purchase price would be needed to conduct further site-specific assessments and to develop facility infrastructure.
This puts the funding of a regional facility beyond the reach of the currently available budget of local municipalities and sporting clubs.
Councils bordering the G21 region, including Ballarat and Wyndham, are known to be experiencing similar difficulties in locating motor sport facilities.
Therefore, G21 believes the placement and funding of a facility now demands a joint approach including neighbouring regions, best led by the State Government.
BENEFITS FOR VICTORIA AND THE G21 REGION
The Regional Motocross Facility will:
- provide a safe and legal riding area for up to 1,000 displaced riders in the G21 region.
- provide best track conditions in a controlled supervised environment. This will provide an alternative to dangerous riding and antisocial behaviour on public roads, residential areas, community recreation areas and parklands.
- provide job creation opportunities through the construction, maintenance and ongoing management of the regional centre.
- facilitate direct and indirect economic benefit connected with the procurement of national, state and regional events.
- provide a social and recreational outlet to a under-resourced market; including the high risk youth market and often socially displaced retired men aged 55 and over.
- provides valuable accredited coaching and training development opportunities for all ages and abilities.
- help reduce accidents and injuries within the region through safety education programs.
WHAT AS BEEN COMMITTED
A State Government commitment:
- of $150,000 towards a business case assessing the viability of a multipurpose motor sports venue at Fiskville (Moorabool Shire).
- to lead a Working Group (that includes G21, relevant adjoining regions and sport representatives) to investigate a prospective regional motocross facility.
A business case assessing the viability of a multipurpose motor sports venue at Fiskville (Moorabool Shire) is currently being undertaken.