Melbourne VIC, Australia, 23 April 2017 |

Victorian Treasurer Tim Pallas and Minister for Sport John Eren were joined today by Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley and Melbourne Olympic Parks CEO Brian Morris to announce $271.55 million to complete the third stage of the Melbourne Park redevelopment.

The funding will guarantee that the Australian Open stays at Melbourne Park until at least 2036 and ensure Melbourne remains the global home of sport and entertainment.

A record 728,763 fans poured through the gates at Australian Open 2017, which was aired live in 220 territories on more than 65 different TV channels, reaching more than 900 million homes worldwide.

“Yet again the State Government is showing its belief the Australian Open is one of the premier sporting and entertainment events,” Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley said.

“The Victorian Government has played a major role in the remarkable success of our Grand Slam with its foresight and planning.

“The government has led the way with the world-class redevelopment of the Melbourne Park precinct and the people of Melbourne have embraced the event in their hundreds of thousands as a result,” Mr Tiley continued.

Stage 3 fast facts

The third stage will feature:

  • A new multi-purpose 5,000-seat sunken show court and arena
  • Central terrace with a new elevated outdoor public space
  • A new function centre
  • A media centre and broadcast studios
  • Central kitchen, loading dock and logistics hub.

Fans will find their way around the courts easier with new and improved pathways, new scoreboards and signage. The southern entry will be realigned and the northern entry upgraded as part of the works, improving access for everyone.

The project will create 600 jobs during construction, and support thousands of jobs in our tourism and hospitality industry as more and more people flock to Victoria to see the best sporting heroes and musicians in the business.

The next stage of development will build the facilities needed to attract even more visitors and secure more blockbuster events.

“This project will mean more visitors, more jobs, and even more chances to showcase to the world that Victoria has the best of everything,” Treasurer Tim Pallas commented.

“Melbourne is the sporting and events capital of the world, and we’ll keep it that way,” Minister for Sport John Eren said.

“We’re breathing new life into our iconic venues so we can host more events, and ensure Melbourne remains the home of sport and entertainment,” Mr Eren continued.

Together with works currently underway at Melbourne Park, this brings the Labor Government’s investment to over half a billion dollars, taking the live sport, music and entertainment experience up another level.

Construction work is powering ahead on the new Rod Laver Arena eastern entry pod and world class player and artist facilities, while the newly opened Tanderrum footbridge safely ushered hundreds of thousands of tennis fans from the city to the heart of the action.

Stage 2 is set to be ready for the Australian Open 2019, and construction of Stage 3 to begin the same year.

Australian Open 2017 fast facts

  • In 2017 a record 728,763 fans shared in the excitement of the Australian Open, smashing the previous attendance record of 720,363 set in 2016.
  • Australian Open 2017 was aired live in 220 territories on more than 65 different TV channels, reaching more than 900 million homes
  • There were 720,616,542 hours of coverage viewed worldwide
  • In Europe, the men’s singles final was Eurosport’s highest rating tennis match of all-time
  • Broadcast reached 6.5m viewers nationally on final day, taking cumulative reach to 11.8m for tournament
  • The men’s singles final beat both the AFL and NRL 2016 Grand Finals in audience viewership, with an 81% audience increase over the 2016 NRL grand final and a 19% audience increase over the 2016 AFL Grand Final, making Federer and Nadal’s match the most watched Australian final with 9.63 million hours viewed
  • The Australian Open website at the end of day 13 had a total of 16,310,076 unique visitors, a 16 per cent increase on AO2016, 63,059,647 visits, up eight per cent on AO16 and 406,953,913 page views during the tournament, up three per cent on AO16
  • More than 6.6 tonnes of pork shoulder was consumed
  • More than half a tonne of yellow fish tuna was consumed
  • More than 10,000 fish fillets were served
  • More than 2.5 tonnes of beef was carved into rolls and wraps at the Butcher’s Block restaurant in Margaret Court Arena.