The extension of the basketball/netball centre in Altona Meadows is on track.

When this project was being planned, Hobsons Bay City Council engaged Otium Planning Group about four years ago to analyse our needs.

Otium told us that the growth in basketball participation – our fastest growing sport – meant that Hobsons Bay City Council would need to build two new courts every five years.

I have been arguing for some time that council needs to find a new facility within easy access to Williamstown, where most of the growth is happening.

The eastern side of the municipality is running out of courts to train on.

The obvious site for new indoor courts in the Williamstown High School site in Pasco Street, nextdoor to the existing court/gymnasium.

Another site is in the land between the athletics track and the gymnasium in Newport.

In its report, Otium counted the old basketball court at the gymnasium as one several existing playing spaces, although it is a long time since that was used for basketball games.

The WHS site is the preference, as it means kids can cycle or walk there for training sessions.

Whichever is the ultimate outcome, the facility should not be used solely for training but as a satellite site for the existing competition.

Hobsons Bay is a rarity in Melbourne in having a single centre for running a basketball or netball competition.

Now is the time to begin the forward planning.

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