28 February 2023
Improving amenities and flood resilience of local sporting clubs is a focus for Ipswich City Council as the city marks 12 months since devastating flooding.
More than 100 fields impacted by floods in February and May 2022 are back up and running but the significant task of repairing damaged club facilities is ongoing.
Ipswich Mayor Teresa Harding said there was widespread flood damage to community sporting facilities including fields, courts, tracks and clubhouses used by clubs, teams and young athletes across Ipswich.
“Council provides maintenance for fields and courts spread over 31 venues, dozens of which were impacted and unplayable for several weeks once floodwaters had receded and council crews could assess the extent of the damage,” Mayor Harding said.
“As part of council’s flood recovery program, $30 million has been allocated this financial year to support residents, businesses, clubs and community groups that are still struggling to bounce back or return to full capacity.
“Recovery efforts to support local sporting clubs are now about repairing and upgrading damaged facilities, with improving flood resilience to make sure replaced facilities can better withstand future floods a key focus.
“Council last week approved a contract for almost $6.5 million to ensure the repairs to the sports amenities get underway as soon as possible.
“This money will be spent on places like Kippen Park in Goodna. The canteen and change rooms were destroyed by flood but will now be rebuilt so the Western Spirit Football Club can get back enjoying games and fundraising through their canteen.”
Community, Culture, Arts and Sport Committee Chairperson Councillor Andrew Fechner said flood impacted Evan Marginson Park is home to Goodna Netball Association, Goodna Gladiators Rugby Union and many aspiring athletes.
“Council has completed significant works and resilience upgrades to Goodna Netball Association’s amenities to help them return to full game-day operations after floodwaters caused significant damage to all community infrastructure and facilities in Evan Marginson Park,” Cr Fechner said.
“The refit of Goodna Netball’s clubhouse and canteen included pressure cleaning of walls, internal demolition works, painting, replacing electrical and plumbing services, reinstating hot water systems and installation of stainless-steel benches to mitigate future flood damage.
“On the other side of the park, Goodna Gladiators Rugby Union’s changerooms and amenities also received a comprehensive council-funded pressure wash clean and resilience upgrades such as replacing timber cabinetry with stainless-steel in their first aid room.”
Division 2 Councillor Nicole Jonic said council’s remaining works supporting the Goodna Netball Association will focus on replacing the roof of their canteen and clubhouse facilities.
“Council’s resilience upgrades have provided financial relief for sporting clubs like the Goodna Netball Association, who have been unable to fully return to their beloved clubhouses for almost a year,” Cr Jonic said.
Division 2 Councillor Paul Tully said council is focused on getting grassroots sports back to winning ways by helping clubs recover equipment, relocate facilities where necessary and restore amenities.
“While council expects it may take 18 to 24 months post-flood to have most local parks, facilities and recreation reserves open, there is still plenty of support available for clubs and groups,” Cr Tully said.
The Sport and Recreation Disaster Recovery Program supports not-for-profit sport and recreation organisations with funding to re-establish facilities and activities after extreme natural events.
Funding of up to $20,000 may be available for eligible sport and active recreation organisations located in areas declared under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).
For more information, visit qld.gov.au/recreation/sports/funding/disaster-recovery