Victorian regional cities launch bid to host 2030 Commonwealth Games
APRIL 13 2017 - 12:08AM Tina Jacks
Former basketball star Lauren Jackson is among those behind the plan. Photo: Jamila Toderas
A group of 11 Victorian regional cities and towns is preparing a bid to host the Commonwealth Games in 2030.
The Greater Shepparton City Council is leading the pioneering bid, which would see the events shared between several Victorian regional centres including Shepparton, Bendigo, Ballarat, Geelong, Mildura, Wodonga and Warrnambool - but not Melbourne.
High-profile figures such as former basketball star Lauren Jackson, former Olympic athlete John Steffensen, former Hawthorn footballer Nick Holland and philanthropist Heloise Pratt are on the 13-member taskforce working group, which is chaired by former Swisse executive Adem Karafili.
Greater Shepparton City Council mayor Dinny Adem, who will formally announce the pitch, called 'the people's games' at Victoria Park Lake in Shepparton on Thursday, said if the bid was successful, it would "leave a legacy for millions of people like we have never seen before".
"The economic and social impact will be so significant, not to mention the wave of optimism that would sweep the state," he said.
The bid could face competition from Melbourne and other Australian cities, as the Australian Commonwealth Games Association endorses only one Australian bid for the games, which would then be pitched to the international body, the Commonwealth Games Federation. The Australian association will start considering proposals from 2019, but a decision will not be made until 2023.