An additional grant of $5 million from the NSW Government announced this week will help ensure Hakoah White City is completed by mid-2024.
The funding, committed regardless of the state election result, was announced at Hakoah’s AGM on Monday night and brings the government’s total support for the project to $12.5 million.
Minister for Sport Alister Henskens said it will ensure that the project, which commenced construction in 2022, will be completed as planned.
“Sport plays an important part in the fabric of local communities,” he said. “Providing the Hakoah Club with the financial support required to see this project through will go a long way to ensuring that more people in Sydney’s east can enjoy these benefits.”
Hakoah president Steven Lowy expressed his deep gratitude, saying, “The government has been incredibly generous to our community.”
He said the government recognised “the complexity and tensions going on in the construction industry”.
“At the time of entering into the construction agreement with our builder in the middle of last year, we faced an unprecedented construction cost inflation environment,” he added.
“We asked many major donors and the NSW government for additional support. In a collective further endorsement of this project, I am pleased that this call has been met.”
He said about $78,000,000 has been raised so far through a combination of government funding, major donor pledges and a major membership drive.
More membership drives are panned, which Lowy said “should hopefully cover any differences that we have … in any project we have contingency”.
With the buildings starting to take shape by Hakoah’s next AGM in November, he said another membership drive would take place at the end of this year, “and then maybe one much closer to the opening as people can sort of touch and feel it.”
“We’re very focused on the complexity through the project, but we’re equally focused and excited about what it’s going to be when it’s finished,” Lowy added.
Asked how he will feel when the centre finally opens, he said, “I think it will be one of the most fulfilling days of my life.
“I see Hakoah as having this immense, positive impact on Jewish values, Jewish sustainability, Jewish continuity, and being an absolute hub of activity for our community. This leaves a legacy for our children and grandchildren to benefit from.”
Facilities at Hakoah will include a clubhouse, fitness centre, floodlit all-weather football field, nine tennis courts, two pools, and weatherproof multi-use courts for basketball, netball and more.
Event spaces will cater to a wide range of social, educational, and cultural activities, while the club will also provide a range of cafe and dining options.