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Everything posted by RooBlu

  1. I understand all that, what do you think that I live under rock? There are so many facets to Victoria and indeed Australia than just indigenous culture. So I don't need it rammed down my throat! I DO NOT NEED YOU OR ANYBODY, TO TELL ME HOW I SHOULD THINK AND HOW I SHOULD FEEL OR HOW THE HELL I SHOULD REACT!!! Goodness me, you people are worse than Bible Bashing Zealots. GET IT!!! That's me done, enjoy your indigenous games.
  2. It's cool we have our opinions and we're each entitled to them. You all at least understand my stand point, even you don't agree. We each look at the world differently.
  3. It's cool we have our opinions and we're each entitled to them. You all at least understand my stand point, even you don't agree. We each look at the world differently.
  4. I understand and am not trying to be rude or offend anybody, and apologise if I have. My point is that Victoria is definitely not like the Northern Territory, Western Australia or Northern Queensland where the Abriginal population is visibly present, where its concentration and cultural influence is far greater. I'm simply saying that it's nowhere near as great in Victoria and to try and project that it is gives a very false impression. The truth is that most Victorians really wouldn't know who many of the people with indigenous heritage are in their communities unless those people actually tell them (" my grand mother is aboriginal" or "my great grandparents on my dad's side" etc.). You're looking at this through a young persons eyes who hasn't witnessed the Cancel Culture actively at work in Australia since the Whitlam era. The flying of Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander flags might seem everyday to a 20 yo, but it's only been sanctioned by government for about ten years. Welcome to Country ceremonies to white Australians are only a new event that's come into vogue over the last several years. Many support these new initiatives, and personally I see no harm in them. In my life time I have seen our country transitioned to something barely recognisable to the country I knew as a child in the 60s and 70s. The changes have been enormous and in many instances forced upon us whether we jolly well liked it or not.
  5. I'd like to see shooting get up. Put the track cycling at John Cain Arena and rowing on Lake Wendouree. But I guess we'll find out late next month
  6. Goodness I hope that they don't go too over the top with it, the indigenous population in Victoria is highly urbanised and integrated to the point of virtual invisbility. It's hardly like indigenous customs form a cornerstone to Victorian culture and daily life. I'd hate to see the Games being highjacked by the government pushing a virtue signalling agenda or this state treaty that the Premier keeps talking about.
  7. You clearly know nothing about the dynamics of regional Victoria. Since 2002 some $3 billion had been spent upgrading rail lines, reinstating stations and lines closed under the Kennett government, introducing 100 3-car VLocity sets, modernising signalling and automating level crossing signals. Stations have been upgraded and ticketing automated. Since these upgrades every township with 120 km radius of Melbourne has booked because of faster, more available, modern and clean train services. VLine patronage has soared to point if being victim of its own success. Services have only slowed down due to the frequency of station stops and hugely increased passenger numbers. Since the VLine upgrades began in 2002 Geelong has added 100,000 people, Ballarat 30,000, Bendigo 27,000, Bacchus Marsh 18,000, Wallan from 4000 to 15,000, Kilmore 4,500 to 10,000, Broadford 2100 to 4,500, Ballan 1500 to 3,200. So there might be a reason that the services don't always hit their benchmark times. Then again come to think of it Metro in Melbourne never, ever runs to it's schedules. We're not interested in the inane and I'll informed opinions of somebody from Melbourne coming onto this thread pouring crap all over regional Victoria. Honestly if you can't offer anything constructive and just want to come here trolling and carping about something that you haven't got a snowflakes chance in Hell of changing, then perhaps this forum isn't for you. What do you reckon?
  8. I agree, we'll put our own flair to it and the individual locations will have their own unique atmospheres and activities in and around the cities reflecting their communities.
  9. You can't please everybody. Perhaps to Brekkie Boy Easter isn't important. Not everybody appreciates or celebrates it as a religious event. It wouldn't matter when they held the Games because there will always be one group or individuals who wouldn't agree with the timing. The organisers have chosen the dates because they clash or overlap with nothing. Any other dates would clash and overlap other significant events and major sports competitions which would piss off a hell of a lot more people overall. Few people from the Northern Hemisphere seem to have issue with the dates, perhaps appreciating an opportunity to have a reason to escape the tail end of their Winter? Certainly the nations of the Pacific and Southern Africa don't seem to have any problem with it. I think that organisers have much bigger issues to focus upon now than any concerns about the timing. It is interesting that there were a few big name athletes who chose not to go to the Birmingham Games for their own reasons, but their absence didn't detract from the Games and to be honest, did anybody miss them?
  10. Nobody is suggesting that the populations of these cities will solely fill the stadium's. But if tens of thousands of regional Victorians were able to commute into Melbourne daily during the 2006 Games, it's not out of the realms of possibility for tens of thousands of Melburnians will be commuting to watch competition in the regional centres. At most Bendigo is a 90 minute drive while Ballarat is 70 minutes and Geelong 50 minutes from Melbourne. As long as they get the ticket sales up and running early and prices are reasonable. Another concession may be that your ticket includes the PT ride to the venue as it did in Melbourne 2006. The stadium's aren't going to be super large. The three biggest venues will be the aquatic centre (10-12,000), GMHBA Stadium (Cricket) and Mars Stadium (30,000). Also this is why Ballarat is only hosting three sports at this stage because any additional sports would put a complete strain on its logistics, where as Bendigo is hosting six smaller sports with similar overall spectator capacity across its six venues. Geelong will carry a bigger spectator load in its venues (T20 Cricket, aquatics, gymnastics, hockey and beach volleyball) designed to hold between 3,000 - 40,000. I'd say that people have already seriously put on their thinking caps when they allocated sports and venues because they looked at what the spectator loads would be on each city and the implications for catering, transportation, security, road movement and accommodation.
  11. I think that simplicity will be key. We will no doubt see a master plan soon enough but given the three years and seven months deadline building time will be tight considering the infrastructure that must be built along with the stadium upgrade. It all has to be designed (if designing hasn't already commenced behind the scenes), approved, tenders issued and construction. They need to allow at least two years for construction of the roadway, railway and the new stand. In addition, at least 6 months out they will be laying the athletics tracks and building public plazas etc. So there likely won't be anything too fancy.
  12. White Avenue - Very touchy. To begin with, the design of the present stand was a compromise to prevent shadowing over White Avenue in the mornings. My bet is that at least 11,000 permanent new seats in a new two tier stand will get built along the Eastern and South-Eastern portion of the ground, meaning that the temporary stand would need to seat around 15,000. The new permanent stand would still only extend back about 24 rows on the lower tier and the second tier would need to consist of at least 12-15 rows. This could be achieved without going outside the existing Stadium boundary encroaching onto Creswick Road. Note that the existing main stand consists of 24 rows and seats about 3,500. Alternatively they may look at somehow extending the northern stand back and into the existing Sports Club and re-model the Sports Club. That idea will have to be strongly considered if they want to ultimately reduce the size of the temporary stand and this isn't as crazy as it might sound. The existing sports club is only valued at $5 million and can easily be replaced being incorporated into a new build for the sake of an extra $5 million. Once the temporary stand is gone after the Games, it will most likely be replaced by a berm at the South Western end of the ground similar to the existing hill. I would think that a pedestrian subway would be easier to build under Creswick Road while the road is being re-built. It would remove any need for pedestrian lights and have minimal visual impact. It comes down to where V/Line recommends that the new Station is built. I think that their preference is for the Wendouree Line 540 metres South of the Stadium because it already has established hourly services which would be far handier during football season. But that creates issues then with people crossing Howitt Street which is a busy road in itself (but does have pedestrian lights). The Council favour a station near Norman Street because it will be near a large car park which would support future commuting by Northern suburb residents. There is a lot of space outside the existing stadium fence line around Creswick Road that presently accommodates spill over parking. But much of that space will disappear once the road is widened to four lanes with traffic islands and turning points in the middle. Further they need to accommodate reasonably wide footpaths and new Bus drop off bays next to the stadium. So I expect that the architects will design the new stand(s) to fit inside the present fence boundaries.
  13. I think that you are misquoting him. He didn't say that it was a folly. He said "the organiser in me says that will be a challenge, it won’t be insurmountable, but it’s a challenge". If Victoria can practically demonstrate that it's Games can work then it opens the Pandora's Box for other smaller countries and multiple cities within countries to host. I personally would like to see the Games not come back to Australia for another 40 years and for other countries (other than UK cities, Canada and New Zealand) to step up and host them. For this reason alone, it's not an option, we have to make it work. Throwing your hands in the air, declaring it a disaster before you see the planning and details emerge is what a loser would do, and I am sure that you are not a loser. Having served in the Australian Army for almost 40 years and having regularly worked alongside British Army Officers, over the years the one thing that I heard them consistently say that they strongly admired in Australians is our "Can do" attitude. They like that we don't back down from the difficult tasks and come up with strong practical solutions.
  14. The Mayor of Ballarat, the City's CEO and Mr Michael Poulton CEO of the Committee for Ballarat (It's Chamber of Commerce) have each acknowledged the issues that Baron Sebastian Coe has discussed. The Mayor of Ballarat recently discussed the planning issues that Ballarat will need to address, particularly highlighting the logistics of moving 30,000 people out of Mars Stadium at the end of a Session and that they will have to potentially do this twice a day over several days. This will definitely challenge planners. While athletes and officials will be housed in the team village, Ballarat presently has 4,500 accommodation beds (about half of what Melbourne had during the 1956 Olympics). Ballarat has a highly developed hospitality sector as it is already a highly popular tourism destination. It's challenges will be getting enough train capacity and keeping trains moving on the rail line. After Melton the track is mainly single track with several passing sidings and potentially a train breakdown or accident could de-rail things considerably. Exactly the same applies to the Bendigo line. The State Government have invested heavily in upgrading those two lines considerably since 2002 and further works are underway. Mars Stadium will definitely need an event train platform which is pretty much non-negotiable. Further, the adjacent Midland Highway (Creswick Road) currently only has two traffic lanes North bound 2.48 km between Howitt Street out to the Western Freeway interchange. Again this is a no-brainer, it must be upgraded as a matter of priority while they are designing the upgrade of the stadium precinct.
  15. I'm afraid that in Victoria the calendar is that crowded and cannot give or take one week . Melbourne has Moomba and Ballarat its Begonia festival at the same time during early March culminating in street parades on Vic Labour Day (2nd Monday of March). They are trying to bring the 1st Term School Holidays forward to align with the Games. The AFL football season normally starts up around the third weekend of March in order for it to culminate in the finals throughout September and they are already going to ask the AFL to effectively move their whole season back two weeks. The Opening Ceremony being staged at the MCG in mid March will give the MCG curators only two weeks to recover the surface ready for the football season. Kardinia Park in Geelong will be in a similar boat with Geelong FC home games no doubt kicking off two weeks after the Comm Games finish. Mars Stadium in Ballarat is only used for AFL twice a season so its games can be delayed until very late in the season, although for the time needed to remove the athletics track and re-instate the ground as an oval, to remove the temporary stands and re-condition spectator areas, it would be fair to assume that Mars Stadium may possibly not be used at all for AFL football in 2026. It is likely that the F1 Grand Prix will be moved back to October as it was in 2006 (meaning a likely wet Grand Prix). Weather wise, March and April are the two most stable months in Victoria when the weather is at its best with average daytime temperatures of 22-25 degrees and it generally doesn't rain. To hold the Games in September is not achievable because the AFL Finals are still going. October and November the weather is too Spring-like and unpredictable. Victoria can still be quite wet and possibly cold into November. Also throughout October and November is Victoria's Show season (around the State) and of course the Spring Racing Carnival throughout the State where there are four consecutive weekends of the biggest metropolitan horse racing carnivals culminating in the Melbourne Cup carnival conducted over the first week of November. Mixed in there are the Geelong, Ballarat, Bendigo and Werribee Cups. Unfortunately, if the Games are staged in Victoria they have to work in with the other fixed events which also generate enormous amounts of revenue and spending. It's not about being dis-respectful, it's not Australia's fault that its season's don't align with the Northern Hemisphere. It comes down to practical timing and frankly nobody else was willing to step up and to take it on. The Games were offered to Victoria so they have to work in with Victoria's events calendar.
  16. Absolutely, although cycling is a major medal event for many of the main competing nations, I would be surprised if it were left out. The main points that I was highlighting in my previous post is about the transport of people to and from venues and the challenges that this will present for the Games planners. Regional trains to both Ballarat and Geelong are being used to capacity now so it will be interesting how they deal with up to three times the patronage during the Games. That said, all regional cities public transport bus services are quite under utilised so the availability of busses in the cities shouldn't be as much of an issue. If driving around the state or within the cities to get to venues, in most instances you won't be able to drive up to a venue. You may find that you have to park your car some distance from the venues and Shanks Pony it, or get on a transit bus. Alternatively it may be far easier to catch a train and then get onto a free bus that will ferry you directly to venues from the nearest railway station.
  17. Having done a bit of desktop research, it seems that there is no hard an fast rule that competition standard velodromes must be made out of wood. The standards are that Olympic Standard velodromes must be 250 m long with 45 degree banks. The track must be a minimum of 7 metres wide and have standard lane markings. The materials used for the track may include wood, synthetic or concrete. It seems that in this regard, Ballarat and Shepparton are the only two regional cities with velodromes that meet this criteria. The Ballarat Track was last upgraded in 2011 when it hosted the Victorian Madison Championships. Both venues would still need considerable work still to make either of them Games ready. Certainly a roof or giant awning, lighting and upgraded facilities for competitors and officials. They would also need temporary seating. Neither venue is close to rail transport which means that they would be heavily reliant on busses. Commonwealth Games regulations do not permit carparks to be near venues, mainly for security reasons which is a significant planning issue that all host cities will need to address. As the Mayor of Ballarat recently stated, Ballarat has to consider how it is going to shift 30,000 people out of Mars Stadium at the end of a session. Each average bus can seat 50 people and hold a maximum of 71 seated and standing, and while articulated busses can hold between 94-120, the average V/Line six-car set VLocity train can seat 444 passengers. Although V/Line have recently been testing nine car sets for use on high demand regional passenger lines (Geelong and Ballarat) which will boost carriage capacity to 666. V/Line currently has a fleet of about 100 three-car sets. In addition there are still 120 diesel hauled carriages (capable of seating between 52-88 passengers each) to supplement services if needed. An articulated Ballarat PT Bus (above) Standard PT Buses (above) A 9 car VLocity set undergoing trials in 2022 (above) Inside a standard VLocity carriage 40 year-old Diesel hauled sets at Southern Cross Station (above) Inside a typical economy diesel hauled N Class carriage (above) While parking may not be permitted at the Comm Games venues, it would seem that Ballarat already has a plan which it already uses for its AFL football games. While for AFL games they allow off street parking in the vicinity of the stadium they also make provision for parking at designated open areas about 1 km from the stadium and free busses are used to ferry people to and from those designated parking areas. Hopefully by the Games they at least will have a train station or event platform established near Mars Stadium. The station certainly doesn't need to be fancy or have all of the bells and whistles, it just needs to be a covered platform with Myki tap on/off points with easy pedestrian linkage to the stadium.
  18. Amen to that. I do agree that the software underpinning this forum is extremely dated. It's like the Delphi from the late 90s. There's no editing or deletion functionality. No image uploading or video sharing. The emoji's ... ... the less said probably the better. The file and folder arrangement is all over the place and there seems to be no logic or order to the directory structure. I can see why it doesn't attract many contributors.
  19. No, make no mistake, Twitter like Facebook is an Advertising and personal data gathering platform. That's where they make their money.
  20. I am not having a go at you. I am simply asking you to consider that if there is somebody here following the Comm Games from Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong or the Latrobe Valley; and who is also interested enough in relevant local news articles from Bendigo to digitally subscribe to the Herald Sun, the Geelong Advertiser or the Ballarat Courier, then we might rightly assume that they would have already extracted those stories and already posted them on here in detail before they even hit Twitter. Remember that the Twitter "headlines" are just that. They offer headlines only and absolutely no substance as their sole purpose is to encourage digital subscription and nothing else. Cheers.
  21. Mate there's absolutely no point posting links to newspaper articles that are locked out to non-subscribers.
  22. From today's Ballarat Courier: The race is now on: Will Ballarat be game-ready by 2026? As the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games launches this morning, the looming question for regional Victoria is, 'will it be ready to host a comparable event in just 44 months' time? "It is different," said Premier Daniel Andrews, as he stood in Ballarat's Mars Stadium in April. "It's a bit riskier than just running it in the middle of a large city. But to do this and to do it well, and we will, [it's] an opportunity like no other." In the usual way of landmark announcements, the tenor of the revelation regional Victoria would play host to the 2026 Commonwealth Games was one of tantalising possibility and potential. Much was made of the incomparable opportunity to leverage the games to expedite or attract additional state government investment into regional centres, as well as the economic benefit the games, by rights, should or would - in the opinion of government - inevitably afford. In the weeks that followed, City of Ballarat chief executive Evan King echoed this sentiment by emphasising the once-in-a-generation potential carried by the games, which he declared were "far more than a sporting event". "[It] will deliver legacy sporting infrastructure," he told a gathering of the city's most prominent leaders. "It will clearly deliver transport infrastructure; it is going to deliver housing infrastructure for us [and] it will deliver visitor economy opportunities." Three months on, as we come to grips with terms such as 'legacy infrastructure' and the wider common language of major sports management, all eyes remain firmly trained on Birmingham, as it opens the Commonwealth Games 2022. In just 12 days' time, however, those games - whatever their enduring impact - will be at an end, and the focus will inexorably shift to regional Victoria, which notably has around half as much time to prepare for the games than host cities of times past. That much owes to the fact that the Victorian government was the only city across the more than 50 nations comprising the Commonwealth to make a bid for host-city status. And, remarkably, that bid itself only materialised at the behest of a desperate approach from the Commonwealth Games Federation, which, at the time, was at risk of drowning in the ignominy of failing to secure a willing host for the 2026 games. On any view, the compressed time frame within which the state has to deliver the games leaves little in the way of scope for delay or inertia so far as critical decision-making is concerned. Added to this, as conceded by Mr Andrews in April, the risks attached to the delivery of the games via four regional centres - Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong and Gippsland - considerably outweigh those which ordinarily accompany the usual delivery of the games through a major metropolitan city. "The reality is that it is [local] councils which will play a major role in the delivery of the '26 games," said City of Ballarat mayor Daniel Moloney this week, citing the unique format of the 2026 games. "As council, we're really excited about the opportunities," he went on to say, "but we also know that there's going to be a huge amount of work that will ultimately fall to each of the four key councils and given the tight timeline for the games, there will definitely need to be local intel." Premier Daniel Andrews (third from the left, back), announcing the Commonwealth Games 2026 at Mars Stadium in April 2022. Picture: Adam Trafford "What's unclear, though, is exactly what needs to be delivered from a council point of view, and that's because the key infrastructure decisions [by state government] haven't been made yet." So much is true; though the Victorian government has - to date - committed $2.6 billion for the games in the 2022/23 budget, nothing beyond the initial announcement of four athletes' villages and "modern sports infrastructure" has been disclosed regarding the particulars of that expenditure. Most of those funds, moreover, the state government has said, will only be spent in 2025 and 2026; a state of affairs which hangs a conspicuous question mark over the capacity of all four regional centres to successfully execute the games come March 2026. Perhaps with a view to dispelling or capitalising on this growing sense of unease or confusion, the City of Ballarat recently released a five-page advocacy document, specifying the perceived infrastructure requirements of the city as it prepares to host its allocated events, which include athletics, T20 cricket, boxing and may expand to rowing and the marathon. Headlining this wish-list is a third potential train station somewhere within the vicinity of Mars Stadium, the duplication of Creswick Road - to create a "grand entrance" at the city's northern gateway, airport and bus network upgrades and, of course, an athletes' village in the form of mixed-housing. There are, however, no plans currently afoot to internally restructure the organisation with a view to dedicating additional human resources to the planning stage of the games. "I have fairly extensive personal knowledge myself already," Mr King told this masthead, adding that the city had not sent any delegation to Birmingham. "I have many, many friends that will be over there [Birmingham], and I'm obviously also working very closely with the state government that is sending a delegation there." "I've also recently met up with the Gold Coast City Council to talk to them about learnings from when the Commonwealth Games were there." Though, like Ballarat, none of the other three councils have sent a delegation to Birmingham, two - Bendigo and Geelong - are conversely funding internal director - or senior-level appointments to expressly oversee planning and delivery of the games. Latrobe City Council, similarly, is evaluating the resources it will require to successfully support the event. The Courier understands the City of Ballarat will not follow this lead, leaving responsibility for this critical advocacy and planning phase to the "executive leadership team" as a whole; all of which may or may not, depending on your view, hamper the ability of the city to successfully leverage the infrastructure funding it requires to deliver the games to the requisite standard. Speaking in Ballarat last week, Mr Andrews told reporters that though he had no news for Ballarat with respect to the games, the organising committee he chairs "meets often" and that there was "much work going on". "You can be assured, from a planning point of view, that we will not allow anything to get in the way of delivering an environmentally sustainable, successful, thoughtful [games]," he said. "We will make good planning decisions in good time." With the countdown on for the 2026 games and the expectation that the investment will leave infrastructure that benefits regional cities long after the 2026 fortnight-event, the lessons from Birmingham and decisions to come will make compelling reading.
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