According to current forecasts, activity in the sport construction sector appears to be set to maintain a respectable level of growth throughout the foreseeable future.
Last year, the value of building and engineering work done on entertainment and recreation facilities amounted to $5.796 billion, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).
This year, the Construction Forecasting Council (CFC) expects that number to rise to $6.024 billion. By 2014/15, the council expects the value of work to have reached almost $7 billion ($6.947 billion).
(A note of caution is warranted. Whilst the above figures are the best available measure of activity in the sport sector, there are many projects relating to categories other than sport that fall under the entertainment category and are therefore reflected in these numbers.
Accordingly, numbers mentioned in this article, all of which relate to building and engineering work on entertainment and recreation facilities, are not a full-proof measure of sport construction activity.)
Perth to Lead the Way
CFC forecasts suggest that most of the growth is expected to come from the eastern states, with activity set to fall away in South Australia and Western Australia.
However, listings of major projects suggest otherwise. With the announcement last month of what will be the nation’s third largest and most technologically advanced stadium at Burswood, Western Australia looks set to lead the way with regard to any substantial growth over the long term.
Assuming the proposed redevelopment of the Adelaide Oval goes ahead, South Australia should also experience strong conditions over coming years.
Buoyed by work associated with the redevelopment of Melbourne Park, Victoria is experiencing strong levels of activity. This year, the CFC expects the value of work done on entertainment and recreation facilities in the state to increase from $930.1 million to $1.205 billion. Beyond that, however, with an absence of large dollar value projects, the forecaster sees only slow growth.
Whilst CFC forecasts indicate the prospect of strong growth in entertainment and recreation facilities in both New South Wales and Queensland, this is misleading so far as the outlook for sport in these states is concerned since most of the main projects on the horizon which fall under the entertainment and recreation category relate to landscape rather than sport.
As far as sport is concerned, whilst New South Wales is set to receive an immediate boost from redevelopments at Royal Randwick Racecourse ($130.8 million), the main showground arena at Sydney Olympic Park ($60 million) and Broken Hill Golf and Country Club ($50 million). Beyond that, an absence of major developments on the long term horizon does not bode well for the state’s outlook.
Queensland does not have any major projects on the horizon.