Courtesy: The Sidney Morning HeraldCapital Football confirm potential move to Canberra Greyhound Club
by Eamonn Tiernan20 April 2018
Capital Football have confirmed they are investigating ways to expand their facilities in Canberra and a potential move to the Canberra Greyhound Club is on their radar for a futsal centre.
Fairfax Media revealed earlier this week Capital Football officials had met with the greyhound club about developing the existing track at Symonston to cater for a soccer field.
The ACT government has banned greyhound racing, which will be enforced from April 30, but the club is keen for its facility to be used while they fight for survival and in the hope the racing ban is overturned in the future.
Capital Football chairman Mark O'Neill and directors have met with greyhound club chairman Alan Tutt on several occasions since December. Capital Football boss Phil Brown has not met with greyhound officials.
Tutt believes Canberra's governing soccer body is keen to push ahead with development plans at the track, but no firm plans have been tabled.
Capital Football also explored an option to build a base at the AIS and has been working with the government to improve its facilities.
Capital Football says limited facilities are limiting the growth of soccer in Canberra. There are 12,000 juniors in the capital and a total player base of 30,000.
"Any discussion between the Capital Football Board and interested organisations in a facility development have been entirely conceptual in nature and amount to testing the waters of what could be achieved to improve facility access, which is currently obstructing the continued growth of our sport," Capital Footbal said in a statement.
Capital Football said it has been searching for an appropriate site to build a futsal facility since 2016, but has been unsuccessful so far.
"Capital Football has long held an aspiration to partner with willing organisations to develop a futsal facility," Capital Football said.
"During 2016-17 we engaged with the ACT government to identify possible land for such a project. At that time available land was scarce, and Capital Football opened dialogue with several potential partners including the Australian Institute of Sport and Greyhounds ACT to explore all available options.
"Capital Football also considered the potential of re-purposing vacant warehouse space into futsal courts."
Greyhound racing will host its farewell meeting at the Canberra Cup on April 29 as the ACT government prepares to enforce a ban on the sport.
Posted by Luca Ranocchiari