STADIUM VISION: An NRL stadium at Ripley Valley would be configured in much the same way as the one the Gold Coast Titans use at Robina.
STADIUM VISION: An NRL stadium at Ripley Valley would be configured in much the same way as the one the Gold Coast Titans use at Robina. CONTRIBUTED

Ipswich NRL bid eyes Ripley

THE WESTERN Corridor NRL bid's long-term vision is to play NRL games out of a rugby league customised stadium in the Ripley Valley.

If the NRL decides to expand in 2018 and grant the bid team a licence, the side would initially play out of Suncorp Stadium. But the long-term plan is to have the team train and play in Ipswich.

"You have to think strategically and long term," Western Corridor bid chief executive Steve Johnson said.

"We have carefully considered the strategic plan for the state of Queensland.

"Originally we will start at Ipswich Brothers as our training base.

"The initial plan with the state of Queensland was to build a state-funded training facility at Springfield and be based there until such time as the state built a stadium somewhere in Ipswich itself or Ripley Valley, and then we would relocate there.

"By then the population of Springfield is projected to be more than 120,000, and they would need that sporting venue. By us being there originally and moving on you have created a sporting facility needed by the people.

"When we move to Ripley Valley it would have a similar population base. Initially, that was planned for about 2025."

The Ripley stadium would be similar to the Robina stadium currently used by the Titans.

"Eventually you want a side playing in the Western Corridor, and at present there are roughly 725,000 in the corridor," Mr Johnson said.

"Ripley (Development) has started in earnest, now control is with the Ipswich City Council, so the growth in the corridor has been reignited. It will rapidly reach the point where you are going to have well over one million people in the corridor."



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