The Recreation Infrastructure Plan 2024-2039 provides an overarching recreation infrastructure planning framework for the Council.

The Recreation Infrastructure Plan will provide a road map to optimising the use and increasing the capacity of existing recreation infrastructure across the City of Ballarat, whilst planning for new recreation infrastructure in the new growth areas. The Plan will focus on Active Open Space provision and planning for municipal assets on Council owned and/or managed land.

The Plan’s strategic directions and road map aim to deliver on the vision:

The 15-year Recreation Infrastructure Plan aligns with the Community Infrastructure Plan 2022-2037. It will define the strategic investment decisions to meet the needs of the growing Ballarat community over the next 15 years by ‘investing in the right locations, at the right time, to the right standard’ based on a sound evidence base.

Ballarat recreation infrastructure will equitably support everyone in the community to participate in sport and recreation today and into the future.

1. Planning: review sports facilities in a well-planned and sustainable way Infrastructure

2. Deliver: diverse and multi-use sports facilities that respond to community needs

3. Utilisation: optimise use and provide equitable access to sports facilities

4. Partnerships: work together to plan, invest in and use sports facilities

5. Advocacy: advocate for projects that support community sport

International: International facilities are the highest-level facilities, capable of hosting international events and competitions and national competition games. These facilities promote elite sport competitions and games and provides entertainment. Example of this facility is Mars Stadium. International facilities have very specific requirements which vary depending on the sport they service, the spectator seating and amenity required for the capacity of the venue, including corporate suites to public seating areas. They are venues that include a high level of technology including large electronic scoreboards, lighting and sound systems for entertainment purposes. They are normally provided for by State and Federal Governments, national sporting organisations and professional sporting clubs.

State/National: A facility with the ability to host state/national competitions and events or to serve as a state/national performance training hub for one or more sports codes. They are destinations for sport and recreation and events and deliver social and economic benefits to the wider regional/country region. An example of this type of facility is Ballarat Sports Events Centre.

Regional: A facility with the ability to provide for regional or municipal catchment. They can host regional competitions, serve as a regional high performance training hub for one or more sports codes or provide community participation opportunities for a high number of people across municipal boundaries. Regional spaces and places are often the primary centre of co-located, multi-sport and active recreation facilities within a regional catchment. Generally, 15ha+ in size or provides a specialist elite sports facility. An example of this facility is Ballarat Regional Soccer Facility and Ballarat Aquatic and Lifestyle Centre.

District: A facility with the ability to provide for organised community sport participation opportunities for a catchment of one to three suburbs. They provide multiple fields and opportunities for a number of teams/competitors/participants within a district to participate. This community facility is 5ha to 15ha in size. An example of this facility is Marty Busch Reserve. A district active recreation hub would have three to five active recreation facilities such as skate park, informal hard court, climbing wall, outdoor gym stations and fitness track.

Local: A facility that provides for organised community sport participation opportunities for a local neighbourhood or community catchment. This community facility is 1ha to 5ha in size and provides for local community or junior-sized sports fields of play. They are overflow venues for various outdoor sports on natural grass fields. An example of this facility is White Flat Reserve Oval. A local active recreation hub would have up to two active recreation facilities

To view the 15 road map for recreation facilities across Ballarat, go to page 32 on the Draft Ballarat Recreation Infrastructure Plan

Design Principles The following design principles have been developed to help inform the future design of sports facilities and active recreation hubs.

• Accessible and Inclusive: Sport and active recreation facilities will be universally designed and inclusive, fostering participation in sport and active recreation by all our community, across all life stages, genders and cultures.

• Diverse and Equitable: Sport and active recreation facilities will offer diverse mix of facilities, programs and experiences. Council will provide an equitable distribution of sport and active recreation precincts across the municipality.

Safe and Welcoming: Sport and active recreation facilities and programs are designed to be visible, open and welcoming to community, creating a safe place for girls and women to participate.

• Multi-Use: Sport and active recreation facilities will be multi-use, offering several activities, programs and experiences for users.

• Connected: Sport and active recreation facilities connection across our communities and our unique natural environment.

• Sustainable: Sport and active recreation facilities will be designed and operate efficiently, whilst being well managed and maintained.

The Recreation Infrastructure Plan will:

  • Deliver municipal assets to maximise residents' participation in sport and recreation and be part of a physically active and healthy community.

  • Develop a well-structured and evidence-based plan that provides fair and equitable access to recreation facilities across all community sections, services sports equitably, and is based on existing and future demands.

  • Allow consolidation of the Recreation Services capital program, inform planning and the financial resourcing required to deliver on the priority projects identified.

  • Outline the pipeline of recreation capital projects to be delivered to meet our growing community's needs and future demands for the next 15 years.

  • Be consistent in approach to the adopted Community Infrastructure Plan.

  • Provide facility provision standards relevant to recreation facilities across the city to guide future investment.

  • Ensure industry best practice standards and benchmarking are applied to the next 15 years of recreation infrastructure planning.