Rugby League

Canberra Raiders denied government funding for $19 million centre of excellence

The Canberra Raiders have been unsuccessful in securing federal government funding for their $19 million rugby league centre of excellence in Braddon.

Raiders chief executive Don Furner, PCYC chief executive Stephen Imrie and Raiders general manager Mark Vergano at ...
Raiders chief executive Don Furner, PCYC chief executive Stephen Imrie and Raiders general manager Mark Vergano at Northbourne Oval. Photo: Graham Tidy

The project will be delayed until at least the middle of 2018, but that is dependent on the Raiders receiving funding in the third and final round of the National Stronger Regions Fund (NSRF).

A total of $505 million has been allocated in the first two rounds of the NSRF, but none of that has been for projects in the ACT.

The Raiders are asking for between $9 million and $9.5 million in federal government funding to assist them to complete a 4000-square-metre centre of excellence in Braddon on land the Raiders own.

There are plans to incorporate office space for charities and not-for-profit organisations, such as the PCYC, Menslink and Marymead.


The development is not linked to the proposed $80 million redevelopment project on the site of the former Braddon Club at the junction of Donaldson, Cooyong and Torrens streets.

Raiders chief executive Don Furner said the club had been encouraged to resubmit another proposal for the third round of funding. Announcements of which round three projects will receive funding will be made next July.

It is estimated it will take two years for the rugby league centre of excellence in Braddon to be completed once funding is secured.

The Raiders have secured support from the ACT government and the NRL for the project, but it can't happen without federal government funding.

Furner said the move to Braddon was about returning the Raiders to where rugby league has been played since 1927, and would set the club up financially for at least the next 20 years. The Raiders are currently based at Bruce.

The federal government is providing $1 billion over five years starting in 2015-16 through the NSRF to fund priority infrastructure in local communities.

Grants must be between $20,000 and $10 million and funding must be matched in cash on at least a dollar-for-dollar basis.

The project must deliver an economic benefit to the region beyond the period of construction, and projects should support disadvantaged regions or areas of disadvantage within a region.

Some of the projects that were successful in the second round of funding include an $8 million redevelopment to the Lavington Sports Ground in Albury, a $12.45 million expansion of the Frankston Regional Basketball Stadium and $23 million for a sports complex in Tuggerah.