Macedon Ranges council has applied for $3.9 million in federal funding to build the first stage of New Gisborne Regional Sports Fields.

At a special meeting last week, the council decided it would nominate the $7.8 million project for the federal Building Better Regions fund. It will also seek funding for a $1.76 million upgrade of Kyneton Saleyards and Truck Wash Facility.

New sports fields in Gisborne have been on the table since the council’s 2006 Leisure Strategy Plan recommended investigating new ovals as a high priority. The council bought land on the corner of Barringo and Hamilton roads in New Gisborne in 2015 for the project.

At its meeting last Wednesday, the council also moved to increase its contribution to the project by $200,000 – to a total of $3.9 million over the financial years 2018-19, 2019-20 and 2020-21 – to match the Building Better Regions Fund requirements.

Stage one of New Gisborne Regional Sports Fields would include a $6.5 million synthetic oval.

The council said the project is ready to start once funding is secured.