AFL Boss supports Hobart’s proposed $750m stadium

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Hobart Stadium

AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan has given his support for Hobart’s proposed $750 million waterfront stadium, while also showing support for Tasmania’s own AFL team. The proposed site on the banks of the River Derwent is also close to the capital’s CBD, ferry terminals and the northern suburbs transport link.

“I think it (a Tasmanian team) has always taken it seriously but I think we have the balance sheet and the resources and the teams have gone into northern markets, we are in a position where we can make the decision in a way where we’ve got the investment capabilities to do it,” Mr McLachlan

McLachlan said “I was just talking to the Premier (Peter Gutwein) then and I thought the stadium looked incredible during the week and I asked about funding and he said, ‘don’t you worry about that, it’ll be fine’,”

 

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from the mercury 6.3.22

AFL supreme Gillon McLachlan has given the thumbs up to Hobart’s proposed $750 million waterfront stadium while also declaring the league has the balance sheet to bring in a Tasmanian team.

McLachlan, in Devonport for the Healing for Hillcrest match between Hawthorn and Richmond, said the decision on a Tasmanian team entering the league might not just be down to dollars and cents.

Conor Nash marks the ball during the Hillcrest tribute game between Richmond and Hawthorn at Devonport. Picture: Grant Viney

Conor Nash marks the ball during the Hillcrest tribute game between Richmond and Hawthorn at Devonport. Picture: Grant Viney

“I think it (a Tasmanian team) has always taken it seriously but I think we have the balance sheet and the resources and the teams have gone into northern markets, we are in a position where we can make the decision in a way where we’ve got the investment capabilities to do it,” McLachlan told FoxFooty.

DEVONPORT, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 05: Jeff Kennett, President of the Hawthorn Football Club, Tasmanian Premier Peter Gutwein, Gillon McLachlan, Chief Executive Officer of the AFL and Peggy ONeil, President of the Richmond Football Club watch on from the stands during the 2022 AFL Community Series match between the Hawthorn Hawks and the Richmond Tigers at Devonport Oval on March 5, 2022 In Devonport, Australia. (Photo by Dylan Burns/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

DEVONPORT, AUSTRALIA – MARCH 05: Jeff Kennett, President of the Hawthorn Football Club, Tasmanian Premier Peter Gutwein, Gillon McLachlan, Chief Executive Officer of the AFL and Peggy ONeil, President of the Richmond Football Club watch on from the stands during the 2022 AFL Community Series match between the Hawthorn Hawks and the Richmond Tigers at Devonport Oval on March 5, 2022 In Devonport, Australia. (Photo by Dylan Burns/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

“It hasn’t been in that position before and I think Tasmanians have understood that.

“I think now the thing can be looked at a bit more as an investment in football rather than having to be the growth engine the other two more recent licences have been.”

Earlier this week the Mercury revealed the Tasmanian Government’s proposed new Hobart stadium for Regatta Point, which would feature a retractable roof.

The proposed site on the banks of the River Derwent is also close to the capital’s CBD, includes ferry terminals and would be part of the northern suburbs transport link.

“I was just talking to the Premier (Peter Gutwein) then and I thought the stadium looked incredible during the week and I asked about funding and he said, ‘don’t you worry about that, it’ll be fine’,” McLachlan said.

“Everyone has got to come to the party on this but there is a process to play out.

“I’m not avoiding it but we’ve got to wait to play that out but I think there is a lot of work being done and I think we realise this is a pretty seminal moment for Tasmanian football, I think everybody understands that.”

Jeff Kennett, Premier Peter Gutwein and Gillon McLachlan during the Hillcrest tribute game between Richmond and Hawthorn at Devonport. Picture: Grant Viney

Jeff Kennett, Premier Peter Gutwein and Gillon McLachlan during the Hillcrest tribute game between Richmond and Hawthorn at Devonport. Picture: Grant Viney

A final decision on Tasmania securing a 19th licence is expected about August, with Mr Gutwein — also in Devonport for the Hillcrest game — supremely confident of a positive answer.

“It is so close you can almost touch it,” Mr Gutwein said.

“Later this year my expectation is we will get a licence.

“There is still some work to be done, there is no two ways about it and there will be a glide path to it but I’ve never been more confident we are on the cusp of getting our own licence and having a team on the national stage and quite rightfully so”

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