With Tuesday’s marking three years to go until the Opening Ceremony of the 2026 Commonwealth Games in Victoria, organisers are doubling the size of their headquarters in Geelong.
The state Government has announced that plans had been brought forward to increase the floorspace at the headquarters, at least tripling the number of desks at the Broughham Street premises to prepare for a growing local workforce.
Parliamentary Secretary to the Commonwealth Games Darren Cheeseman and Geelong Member of Parliament Christine Couzens visited the office last week to inspect the works.
“The Commonwealth Games isn’t just about bringing world-class sport to the city, it’s also about creating local jobs and it’s great to see the headquarters expanding,” Mr Cheeseman told the Geelong Times.
Couzens added: “We’re almost three years away from the 2026 Commonwealth Games and I’m looking forward to seeing local communities benefit from local jobs, new infrastructure and thousands of visitors coming to watch.”
More than 50 people already work in the office, including Games executives who have made the move to the Geelong region from the United Kingdom having worked on Birmingham 2022.
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The office expansion works, which are presently under way and are due for completion by mid-year, will deliver a workspace that will accommodate 180 people.
“The whole Victoria 2026 team is delighted to be up and running in Geelong, focusing on bringing the Commonwealth Games into our regional communities,” Victoria 2026 chief executive Jeroen Weimar, who is based in the Geelong office, said.
“We are working closely with our many local partners and colleagues across the state to make the most of the exciting opportunities that these Games represent.”
Weimar was appointed in June 2022 to head Victoria 2026 which will lead the delivery of the Games, managing venues and services, logistics, partnerships and engagement, as well as media, broadcasting and communications.
The Organising Committee is working alongside with the state-based Office of the Commonwealth Games to liaise with stakeholders including regional councils, Commonwealth Games Australia and global organisation the Commonwealth Games Federation.
Australia has hosted five previous editions of the Games at Sydney in 1938, Perth in 1962, Brisbane in 1982, Melbourne in 2006 and the Gold Coast in 2018.
Victoria 2026, due to take place between March 17 and 29, hopes to be set a new blueprint for future Commonwealth Games, with a vision to deliver an innovative and flexible model that is unprecedented in the event’s history.
Geelong, Bendigo, Ballarat, Gippsland and Shepparton are set to welcome 20 sports across 24 disciplines, with Melbourne to host the Opening Ceremony.