Mercy Junortoun Sports Precinct

3D render of concept design for Mercy Junortoun Sports Precinct

Catherine McAuley College, the City of Greater Bendigo, Cricket Australia, Cricket Victoria and the Victorian Government are partnering to develop much needed new school and community joint use sporting facilities at the Catherine McAuley College Coolock Campus in Junortoun to be known as the Mercy Junortoun Sports Precinct.

As the population of Greater Bendigo continues to grow so does the demand for more sporting and community facilities throughout the City with additional pressure in high growth areas like Junortoun and Strathfieldsaye to cater for the growth in junior sport for boys and girls and the growing participation by women in Cricket and AFL.

It will create a state-of-the-art junior sporting hub for a range of sports to support educational use during school hours and community use outside of school hours.

This $24.8M project will be undertaken in two stages with the $20.3 first stage of the project fully funded.  The $4.5M second stage of the project is partially funded with the shortfall of $1.5M currently being sought from the Victorian Government.

A partnership of this scale is significant and when completed will provide an exciting new sporting precinct for Junortoun and the wider community.

Frequently Asked Questions

The project will include the development of new playing fields and an indoor sporting complex that provides community use areas and facilities along with cricket hub facilities to:

  • Create a state-of-the-art junior sporting hub, supporting educational use during school hours and community use outside of school hours;
  • Provide irrigated, flexible sports fields (with no fencing to allow multiple sport line marking) suitable for a range of sports across the entire sporting surface
  • Initiate a long-term partnership between the City and Catherine McAuley College in the provision of school, community and sporting facilities.
  • Continue the implementation of the Coolock Campus Master Plan, following completion of the Sister Aloysius Martyn Arts Centre in January 2019 which provides flexible learning spaces and a centre for performing and creative arts.

The project will be undertaken in two stages with the first stage including a redevelopment of the lower oval precinct and the construction of an indoor complex/cricket hub.

The redevelopment of the lower oval precinct will include:

  • Construction of one junior size oval*
  • Construction of one minimum size senior oval*
  • Construction of two synthetic cricket pitches*
  • Construction of two outdoor netball courts*
  • Irrigation, access ways, pathways and landscaping*
  • Goal posts; Training lights; Interchange benches*
  • Electronic scoreboards to senior oval*

Construction of the indoor complex/cricket hub will include the following community use areas:

  • Local level AFL, Cricket Victoria and Netball Victoria female friendly changerooms and amenities x 6*
  • Umpires changerooms x 2*
  • External viewing area*
  • Dedicated storage areas for sporting user groups and school*
  • Social and meeting spaces*
  • First aid room*
  • Kitchen/kiosk*

The Cricket Hub area will include:

  • Six lane cricket training area**
  • Access to changerooms and amenities **
  • Office administration area **
  • Two court stadium***
  • Storage space**

Stage 2 (currently unfunded) of the project will include the construction of:

  • A full-size senior oval with competition lighting and scoreboard*
  • A second junior size oval with training lighting*
  • Goal posts; Interchange benches*
  • Local level AFL, Cricket Victoria, changerooms and amenities x 2*
  • Umpires changerooms x 2*
  • Large social and meeting space*
  • Kitchen/Kiosk*
  • Storage space for sporting user groups*
  • External viewing areas*

*City of Greater Bendigo to contribute partnership funding to these works

**Funded by Catherine McAuley College and the Victorian Government with no contribution from the City of Greater Bendigo

*** Funded by Catherine McAuley College

Cricket, AFL, netball, soccer and basketball.

Cricket Victoria through the Cricket Victoria Infrastructure Strategy (2018) identified and recommended the need to deliver and activate a regional level cricket and community centre to extend cricket service provision across the region.  Bendigo was identified as a key strategic location for the centre. The Strategy also recognised the need to increase access to synthetic cricket pitch playing fields to accommodate increased participation driven by population growth and existing penetration rates and the increase in female participation in cricket.

Local cricket associations have difficulty in meeting the demand for irrigated grounds across the 33 clubs that require synthetic pitches. Competition growth for clubs that play on synthetic pitches is growing, this growth is related to increased female participation, junior competition and increases in the population.

This project will provide much needed facilities and infrastructure for cricket in line with the Victorian Cricket Infrastructure Strategy (2018-2028) which acknowledges a need for more infrastructure in the Northern Rivers Region to:

  • Deliver and activate a regional level Cricket and Community Centre to extend cricket service provision across the region.
  • Increase access to additional traditional synthetic pitch playing fields e.g. within schools, and identification of sites for new facility development.
  • Be a key focus area for increased cricket provision due to strong forecast population growth over the next 10-15 years.  2016/17 LGA Club and Community Cricket Members by Postcode of Residences identified Greater Bendigo - Northern Rivers in Victoria’s top 20 LGA’s for participation.


As the population of Bendigo continues to grow so does the demand for more sporting and community facilities throughout the City with additional pressure in growth areas like Junortoun and Strathfieldsaye.

Rural East Bendigo which includes the areas of Strathfieldsaye and Junortoun has experienced considerable population growth and this will only continue to grow in future years.

Strathfieldsaye has a growth rate of 4.59% p.a. and has a projected population of 13,286 by 2036 while Junortoun has a growth rate of 4.04% and by 2036 the population is expected to reach 9,407.

The AFL Central Victoria Regional Facilities Strategy (2017) developed in partnership with neighbouring Local Governments and AFLCV identifies the need for increasing the capacity of existing sporting facilities to support growth and the development of additional new sports fields to be developed in Bendigo to support projected participating growth. The report concludes Greater Bendigo’s increases in participation based on current penetration rates will require an additional three grounds in Greater Bendigo by 2026.

The City of Greater Bendigo’s $5.7 million contribution to the shared investment will support the College in constructing a $24.8million College sporting and community precinct that can actively be used every day of the week during and after school hours. 

Working in partnership to deliver this project and sharing the costs not only reduces the cost to the community it also improves the quality of facilities that both the City and College can deliver, and the community can access.  

The partnership provides the City and the College with the ability to deliver a superior shared use facility that reduces the need for duplication of sports field investment across education and community sectors. It also means the community will enjoy the benefits of, and access to a $24.8 million facility rather than a $5.7million facility.

Recent examples of shared use facilities in Greater Bendigo include Marist College Bendigo Sports precinct in Maiden Gully, Ulumbarra Theatre – a partnership with Bendigo Senior Secondary College and the Rosalind Park Play Space which was a partnership with Camp Hill Primary School. 

School, community and sporting groups. 

Sporting and community groups will have access to the facility outside of college operating hours i.e. prior to 8:30am and after 4:00pm weekdays, all weekends, public holidays and school holidays except for Good Friday or Christmas Day.  Access to facilities by community and sporting user groups during college hours will be considered based on written application.

Can we please add in. User groups interested in access to the facility can submit an expression of interest for consideration to future use.

The City of Greater Bendigo will take a lead role in managing club and community bookings for the precinct through the City’s online booking system and Active and Healthy Lifestyles Facilities Team.

Catherine McAuley College and the City will form a Steering Committee to coordinate the shared management, operation, use, activation and proposed future improvement of the sporting precinct.

  • Catherine McAuley College is providing the land and will fund the indoor stadium and fifty percent of the joint use facilities.
  • The City of Greater Bendigo will fund fifty percent of the joint use facility areas to meet community and sporting facility provision requirements for Bendigo East and the Junortoun community.
  • The Victorian Government and Catherine McAuley College will fund the regional cricket hub, cricket training nets and indoor courts along with the other 50% of the joint use facilities. 

This is a $24.8 million project that will be funded by the following contributions:

  • Catherine McAuley College/Mercy Education LTD - $17.1M
  • City of Greater Bendigo - $5.7M
  • Victorian Government (Cricket Australia Sport and Recreation Victoria) - $500,000
  • A further $1.5M is currently being sought from the Victorian Government for Stage 2 of the project.

An independent Economic Impact Assessment prepared for the project by REMPLAN demonstrates the total economic impacts in Greater Bendigo over the construction phase, including all direct and indirect economic effects, are anticipated to support up to:

  • $68.035 million in increased economic output
  • 94 jobs in the local economy in year one and another 69 jobs in year two
  • $25.104 million in value-added economic activity.


The architects for this project are Clarke Hopkins Clarke and the construction contract has been awarded to Nicholson Construction.  The redevelopment project will be managed by RMG Project and Engineering Solutions.

Stage 1 work has commenced and the project is expected to be completed by April 2023.

No. Junortoun residents are not expected to be inconvenienced by the works.

Yes.  Members of the community will be able to book the pavilion’s social and meeting spaces for private functions, meetings and events through the City of Greater Bendigo. It should be noted that the facility will only be available for alcohol free events.

The City has recently launched an online booking system for our Parks, Gardens, Civic spaces and Sports fields - whether it is a wedding in the Botanical Gardens, a family reunion at Crook Street Park, a market in Dai Gum San or a school cricket match at Canterbury Park, the system is for all users.


You can now check availability, manage your bookings and payments anytime, anywhere.

Go to create your profile account and make your booking - it’s that simple!

If you have any further questions please contact Brett Flavell at the City of Greater Bendigo by email to [email protected] or by phoning 1300 002 642.

Further information is also available on the Catherine McAuley College website.

We welcome your feedback.

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This includes several bin requests such as missed bins, footpath maintenance, tree inspections and general requests. Visit our make a request page.

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