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Baseball gets $1.5m homer
(From Comment News 18-24 December 2001)
Story by Zoran Nedeljkovic

THE State Government has hit a home run for Baseball WA's plans to build a $4.1 million home at Tom Bateman Reserve in Canning Vale. 

Sport and Recreation Minister Alan Carpenter last Friday announced a $1.5 million funding package to establish a world-class baseball facility. Baseball W A will contribute the remaining $2.6 million. 

Construction is planned to start next year and WIll take five years. The facility will be based on about half of the 35ha site at Tom Bateman Reserve and will comprise: 
  • .A major intemational-standard floodlit diamond playing area and five
    other playing fields
  • Administration building to include catering, change rooms, a medical 
    room, media booth and gym facilities
  • Ten-level baseline seating ter- races for 300 people 

Baseball WA's State team, the Western Heelers, and the Gosnells Baseball Club will be based at the facility. It is expected to attract national and international fixtures.
"This project Will finally give baseball an official headquarters for club, national and international fixtures", Mr Carpenter said. 

"The new venue will see the intro- duction of a new Country Week competition. In rural Western Australia, there are strong competitions in Port Hedland and Geraldton, where the Batavia Blue regularly come to Perth for the minor league competition. 

"Our State Sports Facilities Plan clearly identified the need for partnerships between the State Government, local government and State sporting associations and this project at Tom Bateman Reserve is an outstanding example of this being put into practice." 

Baseball W A has been looking for a new home since Parry Field closed about five years ago. The position of Tom Bateman Reserve, in relation to major transport routes, and the quality of the site impressed Baseball W A officials. 

Negotiations for a lease agreement with the City of Gosnells began in August, when the council agreed to support the proposal and to lobby the State Government for funding. 

Gosnells Mayor Pat Morris said the facility would give the south-east metropolitan region a sporting focus. 

"It will allow our up-and-corning young baseball players an opportunity to use a world-class facility," she said. 

"Both State and international events will come to our city as a result of the new complex. "It will provide both a unique entertainment option for our 
residents and an opportunity for visitors to see some of the great things that we have to offer." 

Gosnells Council has spent about $2.5 million developing Tom Bateman Reserve to its existing standard. 


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