St Kilda Football Club has secured a $13 million State Government grant to commence an exciting second stage of the redevelopment of RSEA Park.

The funding commitment was officially announced today by the Andrews Labor Government as part of the 2018 State Budget.

St Kilda CEO Matt Finnis said the announcement was an historic one for the Saints.

“The funding commitment will allow us to take a giant step towards what we hope will eventually be a $50 million facility at RSEA Park,” he said.

“Stage 2 will unlock the full potential of our new training and administrative base and allow us to bring top-level football back to our spiritual home.

It will see RSEA Park become a broadcast quality venue and ready to host AFLW matches when St Kilda enters the competition in 2020 and also host pre-season AFL matches.”

“I want to thank the local member for Bentleigh Nick Staikos who championed this project and worked with us to create a proposal that truly benefits the local community.”

The next stage of the redevelopment will see the addition of AFL standard female specific change facilities, a grandstand, a second indoor sports court and aquatic facilities, including lap pool and hydrotherapy pool.

Finnis said it was a win for St Kilda and the local community.

“This funding will provide an opportunity to open up RSEA Park to the local community beyond what Stage 1 will achieve, through the additions of a hydrotherapy pool and second indoor netball/basketball court.

“It will also allow us greater capacity to engage local schools and groups with our award-winning community programs.”

“Importantly it also provides St Kilda with extra indoor training spaces, elite rehab facilities and the opportunity for a St Kilda side to once again run out on the hallowed turf at Moorabbin.

“A St Kilda AFLW side will change our club forever when it is introduced in 2020 and it’s incredibly pleasing to know they will have access to change and training facilities that are equal to the men’s team, and that St Kilda fans can gather at our spiritual home once again to watch the Saints take the field.

“With the Sandringham Dragons, South Metro Junior Football League and Southern Football League already set to call RSEA Park home once Stage 1 is completed in November, this funding commitment will enable this iconic venue to become the centrepiece for women’s football in south-east and bayside Melbourne.”

Finnis also welcome the news that the Saints’ home ground Etihad Stadium would be refurbished thanks to a $225 budget commitment from the Andrews Government.

“I’d like to take this opportunity to congratulate the AFL for securing funding to upgrade Etihad Stadium and the broader precinct,” he said

“Having recently agreed to a game-changing new stadium deal with the AFL, Etihad’s refurbishment will be a huge win for St Kilda fans.”

“The promise of easier access, better seating, and better stadium facilities will allow us to work with the AFL to create an even better game-day experience for our supporters.”