The Australian Institute of Sport's future is caught in political limbo, awaiting a proposed land sale required to fund a potential $375 million upgrade to the ageing facility.
Sport Australia and the AIS are considering a wide range of options to redevelop the site which would stand on a much smaller footprint than its current 65 hectares, as revealed by The Canberra Times last year.
This could include a world-class sports technology hub, plus centres of excellence for women's sport and Paralympics - suggestions floated by outgoing Sport Australia chairman John Wylie this week.
But despite more than half of the AIS' facilities being deemed "Not fit for purpose" in a report released earlier this week, and the closing down of the AIS Arena in June, a timeline on its future has not yet been bedded down by the federal government.
"The Australian Government has made no decision with respect to the potential sale of any land within the existing footprint of the Australian Institute of Sport," Sports Minister Richard Colbeck said.
"Any decisions regarding the future of the site, including a vision for the future direction of the AIS, will be made by the Government in consultation with stakeholders including, national sporting organisations, industry partners and the ACT Government."
The 65 hectares upon which the AIS stands is prime ACT real estate next door to the Belconnen Town Centre, and is understood to be worth hundreds of millions of dollars to developers given a sale to the ACT Government would be unlikely.
"All you are buying if you buy it is the land that the asset sits on and then a very expensive asset to maintain," Chief Minister Andrew Barr said on ABC radio.
"You might buy those sites for one dollar because all you'd be inheriting is an expense because they're ageing assets.
"They could just as easily sell it on the open market, they don't have to tell it to us. The Institute of Sport also has a range of other lands, be it car parks or just undeveloped. My presumption is they would seek to sell that land for either a commercial or residential purpose."
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Despite this week's unfavourable report on the AIS, more than 100 athletes are still living and training on campus.
The AIS has also been slated as a key preparation hub for athletes in the lead up to next year's delayed Tokyo Olympics, while bookings from several sports to use the facility are in place until the end of 2020 although travel restrictions due to COVID-19 have led to frequent cancellations.
Several athletes have been unable to travel to Canberra due to being stuck in virus hotspots like Melbourne, meaning full squads have not been able to train together.
Local federal member David Smith is keen to see the AIS upgraded but has been left frustrated by the lack of transparency around the proposed redevelopment, and questioned Wylie's redevelopment suggestions.
"Why don't they come out in the open and say what their real plans are," Smith said.
"What about the centres of excellence per se that are already there? What does that mean for gymnastics. What does that mean for basketball which is probably the big one. What does it mean for the combat centre, the mixed martial arts.
"Some of it doesn't actually make a lot of sense to me. If we're talking about a centre of excellence for women's sports, well what sports are we talking about and why are you making a gendered distinction?
"You're talking about somehow now some sort of centre of excellence for paralympians. Again what sports?"