Read on for the latest news from around the grounds in Canberra sport. We've got the latest stadium update and an inspirational message from Dylan Alcott.
How many studies does it take for Canberra to build a stadium? That's the $317,000 question for the ACT government, which is waiting for the results of a "technical due diligence" report for its new (old) preference of building a rectangular venue at Bruce.
It's been five months since the government announced its plans to officially ditch Civic as a location option in favour of an AIS precinct revitalisation. Another report was commissioned, this time to investigate a few different options at Bruce.
We were told it would look at whether refurbishing the existing stadium, or building a brand new one on the eastern side would be best. But at the moment, we're not sure what the government is getting for its $317,000 and the sixth study of its type since 2009.
After some digging, we've discovered the latest iteration isn't a feasibility study. It's not a site analysis. It won't have stadium designs, either.
The issue came up at annual report hearings in the assembly last week, but there's no timeline yet on when the government will receive the report from Arup, which has been involved in previous reports about stadium plans.
SPEAKING OF THE STADIUM
Thought you'd seen all design options for Civic, Bruce, Turner and Exhibition Park over the past 14 years? There's a new one floating around, and it might be the best.
Some pretty impressive designs started doing the rounds on social media, showing a multi-purpose venue perched in the middle of Lake Burley Griffin. Apparently they were the brainchild of artificial intelligence after Hayden S Banks asked it to design a new venue for Canberra.
Imagine catching a water taxi from Rond Terrace or The Jetty after a drink to catch a Brumbies or Raiders game. Not quite the vista Walter Burley Griffin had in mind, although his 100-year-old designs did include a stadium on the lake.
ALCOTT'S TALE OF RESILIENCE
Ben Alexander wanted to know how Dylan Alcott dealt with the "bad luck" that left him a paraplegic.
"My disability is actually my good luck," Alcott said during a Q&A session with the former Wallabies prop at The Dock, ahead of a Running for Resilience event on Wednesday night.
"I love my life. I'm proud of my disability, I haven't always been ... Mate, I'm the luckiest person on this dock right now, to be living the life I live. Just trying to find ways to innovate and support my community, people with disability, whatever that is.
"Break down barriers, change perceptions, so all people with disability have the same choices I've had in my life. That's why I get out of bed every day."
Alcott was born with a tumour wrapped around his spinal cord which was cut out when he was days old. The operation to cut out the tumour damaged Alcott's spinal cord and left him a paraplegic.
"I didn't want to be here anymore, to be honest, I struggled with my mental health," Alcott said.
"For two years, I got called a 'cripple' and a 'spastic'. I hate those words and I started believing them. For those two years, my biggest regret in my life was I didn't tell anybody. I felt like a burden.
"Then I realised, when I started telling people about it, for every one dickhead that gives you a hard time, there are 10,000 other legends that are worth your time. For every one thing I can't do, there are 10,000 other things I can do."
Like winning 15 titles at Grand Slam events and a Golden Slam [Australian Open, Wimbledon, US Open, and Paralympic Games gold] in 2021.
"I just think his mindset is really special and something should be celebrated," Alexander said.
"What [Alcott] is becoming as a symbol of resilience and trying to always see the good things and always having a positive outlook, his mindset is really special and something that should be celebrated."
The ACT government has trumpeted an investment into flexi cricket pitches as a game-changer for community cricket - but people are already calling for pollies to abandon the rollout and invest in local venues.
A flexi cricket pitch can be rolled out onto any existing surface and be used as a synthetic cricket pitch. The pitches have been used for community-level games under lights at Greenway Oval and Gungahlin Enclosed Oval.
The concept is great in theory - it allows grounds not being used in summer months to be converted into cricket ovals without compromising their use for other sports. But the pitches have been lashed on social media as "poor" and a "terrible inclusion" for junior cricket, often played on uneven or soft fields.
"The lack of maintenance of public ovals meant that if the grass is uneven or softer underneath, the ball rolls along the ground. Just commit, like every other state is, to improving and enhancing turf facilities. And the change rooms that service these grounds," one Facebook user said.
Another added: "Sporting facilities across the territory are sub par for most sports but especially for [soccer]. Highest rent fees in the country for the poorest conditions while country towns have better facilities for a fraction of the cost we pay here."
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