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Newsletter Issue 4 December 2001

Games Display proves popular in Brisbane

An estimated 6000 people visited the Commonwealth People’s Centre in Brisbane between Tuesday 2 October and Monday 8 October. By far the most popular attraction was the Commonwealth Games Display representing Manchester 2002, Melbourne 2006 and the Commonwealth Games Federation.

A strong magnet for people of all ages was the three interactive sports exhibits which were a centre piece of the display. Everyone could test their skills and see how high they could jump, how long they could balance and how fast they could throw.

Appearances by Commonwealth athletes were another drawcard. Swimmers Ashley Callus and Rob Van Der Zant, together with cyclist Danny Day and gymnast Danielle Kelly, signed autographs and posters, tested their skills and talked about their experiences with the large groups of children.

The Commonwealth Games Display featured prominently on all television coverage of the People’s Centre.

Behind the scenes

Even though Melbourne 2006 is still in "low profile" mode a great deal is happening behind the scenes to ensure the Games planning process proceeds at the highest possible level.

The core team of nine full-time staff has been enhanced by the employment of independent experts to undertake specific tasks. The projects and people involved include:

Melbourne 2006 Business Plan
A team comprising John Quayle, Peter Morris, Jim Sloman, Jill Davies and Maurice Holland from MI Associates is carrying out a thorough and detailed review of the Business Plan. All of these people held senior management roles with Sydney 2000, which places them in a unique and strong position to make a valuable contribution to the planning process.

International Broadcast Centre
Gary Fenton, who was CEO of the Sydney Olympic Broadcast Organisation (SOBO), has been tasked with the project of site selection and initial planning of the Melbourne 2006 International Broadcast Centre. Prior to his involvement with SOBO, Gary was Director of Sport for the Seven Network Australia and brings a thorough understanding of the key issues to this task.

Marketing plan
John Poulakakis CEO of Game Plan and former Managing Director of The Campaign Palace Advertising is undertaking a review of the Melbourne 2006 Marketing Plan. This review will include updating communication strategies and budgets for media campaigns.

Media relations
Melbourne 2006 will remain in "low profile" mode until August 2002 in terms of generating widespread mass media coverage. However, there is an important task to be undertaken to provide information to leading sport journalists, magazine writers and television presenters. David Culbert, who is himself a sports commentator and was formerly a Media Liaison Officer with Athletics Australia, will undertake this work. David represented Australia in Long Jump at the 1994 Commonwealth Games (Silver medal) and 1992 Olympic Games.

Team 2006
Initial concept development has been undertaken by John Ross on Team 2006 (working title). This will be the umbrella branding for the myriad organisations and individuals from both government and private sectors that will come together to actually deliver the event. Team 2006 will be the vehicle that provides a sense of ownership to delivery partners even though the Organising Committee may not directly employ these organisations and people. This is an important initiative designed to maintain enthusiasm, inclusiveness and common direction in relation to the task ahead.

Specialist advice enlisted by Melbourne 2006 in the various planning, build and delivery stages will come from Melbourne’s extremely capable events industry, the rest of Australia and even further afield. This will ensure a high quality planning process.

Recent Board appointees

Peter Bartels
Peter is Chairman of the Australian Sports Commission, the Australian Institute of Sport and the International Cycling Federation's Marketing Commission. He was a member of the Business Council of Australia for eight years and has been CEO and Managing Director of both Coles Myer Ltd and Fosters Brewing Group Ltd. In his youth, Peter was an outstanding cyclist, an Australian team member for many years and a Gold Medallist at the Perth 1962 Commonwealth Games.

Paul Rizzo
Paul has held a range of executive positions in marketing, lending and international banking. They have included Managing Director of the ANZ Bank (NZ) Ltd, Chief General Manager – Retail Banking for the Commonwealth Bank and Group Managing Director of Finance and Administration for Telstra Corporation Ltd. In addition, Paul is a Dean, Director and Professorial Fellow of the Melbourne School of Business.

Sue Taylor AM
Susan has wide experience in sports law and administration and a long term association with netball. Currently she is Vice President of the Australian Commonwealth Games Association and President of the All Australia Netball Association. Previously she has been an Australian Netball selector and national team manager. In her professional life she has worked as a paralegal specialising in sports issues.

Transfer of knowledge – M2002 – M2006

In August this year, Melbourne 2006 executives met with the team from Manchester 2002 to discuss the transfer of knowledge program.

Melbourne 2006 will send a small delegation of senior staff to Manchester in March or April for a week. At this time all issues will be reviewed including proposed operations plans, command structures, marketing activities, peripheral promotions, budgets and the expected levels of service.

Manchester 2002 has generously offered to make time available for this intense period of information transfer.

During the Games, a larger delegation of Melbourne 2006 executives and Victorian State Government representatives will observe all aspects of the delivery of the Games. Manchester 2002 staff and volunteers will be focused on their own tasks during this period however they will assist the Melbourne team to learn as much as possible by allowing the delegation members to shadow their staff and attend daily briefings.

After the Games, Manchester 2002 will make their staff available to debrief the Melbourne team. Several days will be allocated to allow significant detailed review of the event. Attendance at the debrief will be more valuable than receiving volumes of reports following the Games because there will be an opportunity for discussion and analysis with the responsible staff.

In addition to the meetings and observation by the Melbourne team, Manchester 2002 have nominated a central contact point to handle all communication and requests for information. As Melbourne 2006 continues to build and plan, the support from Manchester 2002 is vitally important.

From the Chairman’s desk

The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), re-scheduled for March 2002, will see the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), Manchester 2002 and Melbourne 2006 work co-operatively to stage a Sports Breakfast for Commonwealth Leaders, in order to achieve important goals:

• position the Commonwealth Games as the primary event of the Commonwealth Family of Nations

• reinforce the importance of sport in the social fabric of Commonwealth nations

• make a plea for adequate funding support for sport by governments

The Sports Breakfast will be hosted by Prime Ministers Howard and Blair.

Despite the late cancellation of the original dates for CHOGM the Commonwealth People’s Centre proceeded as planned. Elsewhere in this newsletter you will see photographs of the popular display presented by the CGF, Manchester 2002 and Melbourne 2006.

Our team at Melbourne 2006 continues to work very hard on planning and preparation. At this point we are benefiting from expert input from a broad range of specialists in a variety of key areas. Naturally the recent Sydney 2000 experience has also been integrated into this process. The outcome will be a substantially enhanced business plan and a more refined budget.

We are very pleased to see the success of the Manchester 2002 marketing programme and the excellent state of preparations as their event draws rapidly closer. At Melbourne 2006 we are working closely with the Australian Commonwealth Games Association to plan the Australian leg of the Queen’s Baton Relay scheduled for March/April next year.

As 2001 draws to a close we look to 2002 and Manchester with great anticipation.

Ronald J. Walker AO CBE

Venue news

Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG)
In August the Premier, Steve Bracks, announced the redevelopment of the northern side of the world famous Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) to be completed in time for the 2006 Commonwealth Games.

In its redeveloped form, the MCG will seat 100,000 spectators and will be the centre piece of the Commonwealth Games when it hosts the Opening and Closing Ceremonies as well as the Track and Field events.

Lawn bowls/Velodrome development
Work has been progressing rapidly since the announcement that the new State Lawn Bowls Centre would be constructed at the John Cain Reserve in Darebin and will co-tenant with the new indoor Cycling Training Velodrome.

The two facilities will be able to share function rooms and competitor amenities bringing an economy of scale well practiced in the other multi-use venues.

The State Lawn Bowls Centre will boast 5 outdoor natural grass greens (the largest facility in Victoria) and will overlay the successful Darebin Bowls Club that currently has 3 greens on the site.

The Cycling Velodrome will consist of an indoor 250m pine track which will be used for training by some of Australia’s finest cyclists, as well as conduct a number of domestic events.

Tenders for the construction of the entire facility are to be called for in November and current planning has the completion of construction set down for mid 2003.

It will be a truly sensational facility and will add to the landscape of world-class venues Melbourne offers for all sports.

Village tender update
Even though the 2006 Games are still more than 4 years away, Melbourne is fortunate there are only a few pieces of the venue puzzle yet to be filled.

One of the major parts of the puzzle is the Athletes Village – a facility that in Games mode will house 6,000 Athletes and Team Officials for a period of 25 days.

It will provide many lasting experiences and memories for the participants and is integral to the success of the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne.

The Athletes Village is to be a housing development that will be modified to suit the needs of Melbourne 2006. After the Games it will be returned to the private developer for sale as high quality homes. Expressions of Interest were sought from major developers earlier this year and as expected there was a strong list of respondents. Recently this list was shortened to six through a prequalification process and on 19 September Requests for Proposals were issued to those six companies or consortiums.

The site proposed in Melbourne’s bid is at Parkville. Developers have been given the opportunity to propose alternative sites for consideration. This process will ensure the best option is selected for both the Games and the Government.

Melbourne 2006 is working closely with the State Government of Victoria to ensure the Athletes Village meets the needs of athletes and provides the necessary support for them to perform at their best.

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