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8 January 2018 | Tennis SA

Tennis Australia and Tennis SA today unveiled plans for South Australia’s first all-weather arena at Memorial Drive.

The redeveloped centre court is the jewel in the masterplan to transform Adelaide’s sporting precinct.

Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley is excited by the prospect of a world-class tennis venue for South Australia.

“The redevelopment of the Memorial Drive centre court is a big step forward for tennis,” Tiley said.

“South Australia has a rich tennis history and the state has produced some of our country’s biggest names in the sport. For many years, the Adelaide men’s event provided critical match-play for the world’s elite tennis players in the lead up to the Australian Open, with stars such as Djokovic, Henman, Hewitt, Enqvist, Woodbridge, Courier, Ivanisevic and Haas all having lifted the trophy at Memorial Drive.

“There is a need for a 21st Century facility that can be filled with new, fresh content.

“We are really excited by this project and for what it would mean to the sport and for tennis fans in South Australia. We believe that with facilities such as these unveiled today, Adelaide can gain international prominence on the global tennis calendar,” Tiley continued.

Tennis SA CEO Steven Baldas described the plans as an exciting opportunity for both tennis and all South Australians.

“Today’s announcement will not only aid Tennis SA in attracting major tennis events back to Memorial Drive but it will also bring life and energy to whole Riverbank Precinct 365 days of the year,” Baldas said.

“The proposed multi-purpose venue has been designed to complement the heritage of Memorial Drive, with its window arches and ivy linked to the Adelaide Oval. It will be an important step in meeting South Australia’s ever expanding sporting and entertainment needs.

“We have been working with all levels of government to ensure that this project has the support it needs throughout the project. All of our research has shown that it will build upon the already significant economic benefits sporting events contribute to our state and will help attract more events to the Riverbank.

We also know that by realising this vision we will consolidate Tennis SA’s financial sustainability. It will allow the organisation to diversify revenue streams and become commercially viable, reducing reliance on government funding for future operations,” Baldas continued.

Memorial Drive redevelopment fast facts:

  • Australia’s newest Tennis complex and a new destination for significant international matches e.g. Davis Cup and Fed Cup, Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) and Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) events.
  • A desirable location for the world’s tennis elite to visit and compete in the lead up to the Australian Open
  • A preferred practice base for Australia’s tennis elite providing three of the world’s Grand Slam court surfaces (one of only two complexes within Australia providing this), enabling athletes to train in their home state
  • A high performance academy training environment
  • South Australia’s first “all weather arena” with a state of the art “Wimbledon style” retractable roof and crowd seating design, creating the perfect venue to attract small to medium concerts and events, ensuring the biggest and best sports and entertainment line-up for the Riverbank Precinct
  • Areas for new cafes  and spacious office accommodation, with the potential to accommodate other sports or attract corporate headquarters from interstate and/or overseas.

Stage 1 fast facts

The $9.786 million Stage 1 project is already underway and will include:

  • A new outdoor show court and two new match courts
  • A state-of-the-art National Academy training venue with all three Grand Slam surfaces – clay, grass and hardcourt – so South Australia can continue to produce world class players
  • A Walk of Champions profiling the historical position of the site and South Australia’s tennis legends
  • Resurfacing of current match courts to ensure the venue can continue to host tournaments such as the World Tennis Challenge.