Shane Rattenbury has changed his mind about Exhibition Park.
He used to think it was a fine idea to have EPIC run by the community for the community. When Andy Barr tried to put the administration of Exhibition Park back in the hands of the ACT Government machine, Ratters was the one who stopped him. This was 5 years ago.
Back then Shane had this vision of groups of grassroots community members making EPIC a true community organisation. That vision has been fulfilled in that Exhibition Park has been run as a genuine community organisation….one that loses money hand over fist.
Shane’s now on the same page as his governing partners on this one.
They lost nearly a million dollars in the last financial year at EPIC. There are plenty of excuses being put forward….among them the fact that the National Tally Room doesn’t happen anymore. Elections are only held every 3 years anyway, so that’s hardly a credible excuse.
Who knows what the future holds for Exhibition Park. You’d suggest that it’s highly likely the site will be sold off for housing in conjunction with the Capital Metro project at some stage. I can’t see harness racing continuing there in the long term.
Shane Rattenbury joined me in studio this morning. He still sees a long term future for Exhibition Park because “It’s going to be in an ideal location once Capital Metro is up and running.”
He foreshadowed the possibility of selling of part of the venue for housing but retaining most of it.
Can you imagine catching the train to the Canberra Show ?
Exhibition Park will now be managed by the territory venues and events unit, which also manages Canberra Stadium, the Manuka Oval and Stromlo Forest Park.
And of course we’ve got a busy couple of months coming up for EPIC. Summernats, Canberra Show and the National Folk Festival are not all that far away.