Melina BATH (Eastern Victoria) (12:13): (68) My question is to the Minister for Commonwealth Games Legacy. Minister, will the homes in the Commonwealth Games village in Morwell be equipped with kitchens and garages?
Harriet SHING (Eastern Victoria – Minister for Water, Minister for Regional Development, Minister for Commonwealth Games Legacy, Minister for Equality) (12:06): I rise today to speak in my role as Minister for Commonwealth Games Legacy. The Andrews government is laying the foundation for a lasting legacy of high-quality housing and multipurpose infrastructure for local communities across rural and regional Victoria. I am delighted to inform the house that we have opened the expression-of-interest process for civil construction to partner with us in creating modern, accessible and fit-for-purpose accommodation – accommodation for around 7000 athletes during the 2026 Commonwealth Games, which will, as a world first, bring the Commonwealth Games to regional and rural communities.
We have a unique opportunity to partner with local businesses and contractors in bringing 2026’s Commonwealth Games to life and to support hundreds of jobs in the process. We will be delivering athletes villages in Morwell, Ballarat, Bendigo and Geelong, and we are absolutely determined to create local jobs and opportunities for business as this work continues. We are in the process of delivering more than $3 billion to Victoria’s economy as part of the Commonwealth Games. That will create around 7500 jobs during and after the Commonwealth Games, and we are committed to working hand in hand with local businesses to deliver these benefits. Interested contractors can register for the process at the Buying for Victoria website, which is buyingfor.vic.gov.au. Expressions of interest are open until 2 pm on Tuesday 28 March. Please share this news far and wide. It is in all of our interests to create and drive jobs across rural and regional Victoria.
Melina BATH (Eastern Victoria) (12:16): I thank the minister for her response. I did give her plenty of time to see if she would mention the words ‘kitchens’ or ‘garages’. I noticed that when the minister at the time came down, the council was very pleased to talk about valuable housing for local residents – post, as a legacy. So in your capacity as games legacy minister, what is the legacy for the Latrobe Valley if these buildings do not have kitchens or garages at the completion of the games?
Harriet SHING (Eastern Victoria – Minister for Water, Minister for Regional Development, Minister for Commonwealth Games Legacy, Minister for Equality) (12:17): Ms Bath, it is a shame I only have a minute to go into the detail of your supplementary question. With anyone’s indulgence, I would be delighted to speak for many hours on this particular subject, because it represents enormous benefit for rural and regional communities. I want to just make it really clear: athletes are not going to be sleeping in garages if that is where you are going with this. Post Commonwealth Games , we will be repurposing athletes accommodation to make sure that it can be used for a variety of different purposes. Unlike those opposite, who wanted to scrap the entire thing before we went to the polls last year, we are determined to invest in and deliver long-term accommodation opportunities for people with a variety of different needs and priorities to make sure, including through repurposing, that accommodation is fit for purpose post the Commonwealth Games in a variety of different settings.