Stadium race is on
The race is on for the right to host the first game at Melbourne's newest sports venue.
Rugby league's Melbourne Storm and soccer's Melbourne Victory hope to host the showpiece debut in the rectangular stadium being built in the city's sporting precinct.
The $320 million project, also known as the Bubble Stadium because of its bold roof design, will be completed within a year.
It will then be open in early 2010, in time for either the end of the A-League summer season or the start of the NRL premiership.
The naming rights to the 31,000-seat venue are up for sale and are expected to attract a $3 million price tag.
A rectangular stadium, suitable for soccer and the two rugby codes, is considered the missing link in Melbourne's sporting venue line-up.
It is being built on Edwin Flack Field on Olympic Boulevard, formerly Swan St.
Grocon spokeswoman Jane Wilson said construction was due to finish late next year.
Melbourne Olympic Parks Trust will manage the venue, and ticket prices and memberships will be controlled by the clubs.
A Melbourne Victory spokesman said that club members would be granted priority access to stadium memberships.
Which team hosts the first-game party could depend on the A-League's 2009-2010 fixtures, yet to be drawn up.
More than 30 games a year will be played at the new stadium, also expected to be used for concerts and other events.