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Office of Sport

This section provides support for organisations that undertake strategy development and planning for community sport infrastructure. The resources and templates are provided to promote alignment of strategic context and best practice planning.



“Access to quality sport and recreation facilities, that are supported by community infrastructure, can be a major factor in a sport's capacity to meet current user demand and plan for future growth.”
Sports Facility Planning & Use, Clearinghouse for Sport

About the resource library

This Community Sport Infrastructure Resource Library is a resource to assist in the planning, design and delivery of community sport infrastructure.

What if there is something missing?

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NSW Government

State level strategic planning documents and priorities.

14 priorities reflecting State Government's approach to tackling important issues for the people of NSW.

Greener public spaces – Increase the proportion of homes in urban areas within 10 minutes’ walk of quality green, open and public space by 10 per cent by 2023..

Greening our city - Increase the tree canopy and green cover across Greater Sydney by planting one million trees by 2022.

NSW Government Premier’s Priorities

A Metropolis of Three Cities – the Greater Sydney Region Plan sets a 40-year vision (to 2056) and establishes a 20-year plan to manage growth and change for Greater Sydney in the context of social, economic and environmental matters

See also: Greater Sydney District Plans – Greater Sydney Commission

A Plan for Growing Sydney

The office of the Government Architect NSW provides strategic design leadership in architecture, urban design and landscape architecture. By integrating design expertise, GANSW work across government, the private sector and the community to improve social, environmental and economic outcomes for NSW and all of our communities. GANSW supports the NSW Government in delivering quality, managing risk and fostering innovation to create people-centred places.

Read more about GANSW

The Sydney Green Grid promotes the creation of a network of high quality open spaces that supports recreation, biodiversity and waterway health. The grid will provide enhanced access to recreational open space, routes for walking and cycling, and opportunities for active and passive recreation.

Read more about the Sydney Green Grid

The office of the Government Architect NSW has produced a draft framework for developing connections with Country to inform the planning, design, and delivery of built environment projects in NSW.

Read more about Connecting with Country

Office of Sport

Our goal: 

Everyone in NSW can access places and spaces for sport and active recreation.

Places and spaces for sport and active recreation enable participation and sporting events. Meeting the evolving needs of consumers to support participation at all levels requires a strategic and coordinated approach to building, modernising and optimising the use of facilities.

Working with our partners and stakeholders, we facilitate the identification of current and future requirements for sport and recreation infrastructure to inform strategic planning and investment decisions. We influence policies and coordinate grants and funding for facilities and upgrades to improve access and utilisation of metropolitan and regional places and spaces for sport and active recreation.

The Office of Sport aims to increase the levels of physical activity of the people of NSW by providing the leadership, policies, programs, funding and infrastructure necessary to enable higher rates of participation in sport and active recreation.

Office of Sport Strategic Plan 2020-2024 (PDF, 4.48 MB)

The purpose of this document is to prepare a template for the planning, development and operation of regional sports hubs (RSH). The model is to be informed by relevant planning initiatives, industry trends, funding opportunities and feedback from state sporting organisations (SSOs).

Regional Sports Hub Model Draft Report  (PDF, 2.16 MB)(August 2017) Prepared by the Otium Planning Group for the Office of Sport

Regional Sports Hubs - Indicative Examples (PDF, 1.01 MB) - Outdoor and indoor sport focus

The Office of Sport has developed a template designed to assist State Sporting Organisations in the preparations of their facilities strategy. This guide (DOCX, 513.63 KB) provides a recommended structure as well as advice, direction and links to supporting resources.

The Office of Sport has compiled the following document to establish effective management of playing surfaces across NSW which are deteriorating with the drought.

These tips will assist in making a difference to playing surfaces and will allow local sporting clubs to keep everyone safe.

Managing playing surfaces during drought (PDF, 498.87 KB)


National Sport Plan - Australian Government

Through a National Sport Plan the Government seeks to understand Australia’s expectations of the sports sector, including our shared goals for high performance sport; sporting participation; cultural and public health outcomes and our willingness to pay for these services, opportunity and success.

National Sport and Active Recreation Policy Framework - Australian Government (2011)

In a landmark agreement highlighting the collaborative approach to Australian sporting system reform, the Sport and Recreation Ministers’ Council agreed to establish the first National Sport and Active Recreation Policy Framework (the Framework) to help guide the development of sports policy across Australia.

The Framework provides a mechanism for the achievement of national goals for sport and active recreation and sets out the agreed roles and responsibilities of governments and their expectations of sport and active recreation partners. 

The Framework is not a policy document but provides a guide for the development of policies by all governments. It is intended that coordinated strategies and initiatives that flow from the Framework will lead to greater alignment of sport and active recreation funding and programs in pursuit of an improved sport and active recreation system.

Clearinghouse for Sport

The Clearinghouse for Sport (Clearinghouse) is an information and knowledge sharing platform for Australian sport. It provides analysis of research relating to sport and active recreation, and its value to the community.

South Australian Regional Level Recreation and Sport Facilities Planning Guidelines (April 2016)

The objective of these guidelines is to provide a platform for improved planning and decision making that will ultimately provide South Australians with better places to play sport and encourage people to participate. The overriding issue for sport and all levels of government is the ability to continue to provide and maintain major sport and recreation facilities to the level required by the community and sporting organisations.

Business Case Guide for Sport and Recreation Facilities (2017) - Government of South Australia - Office for Recreation and Sport

This resource has been developed by the Office to support project proponents, in particular Councils and sporting organisations, to understand and develop business cases for new and improved sporting facilities. The process is primarily aimed at projects in excess of $1million, although small scale but complex projects should also consider undertaking at least an outline business case.

This decision making tool has been prepared to assist in determining the need for, and feasibility of, community and recreation services. While the model is predominately to be used for facility planning, it has been structured so that it can also be applied to program based solutions.

Decision-Making Guide, Sport and Recreation Facilities (March 2007) – Department of Sport and Recreation

The State Sporting Infrastructure Plan has been developed by the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries (DLGSC) to serve as forward planning for the provision of infrastructure to service State, National and International level sporting competition in Western Australia. 

State Sporting Infrastructure Plan (December 2019) - Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries

The Open Space Planning and Design Guide is a collaborative initiative of the Vic/Tas Region of Parks and Leisure Australia, the Victorian Department of Planning and Community Development and the Open Space Planners Network in Victoria. This document sits in a broader industry context to achieve quality non-contested outcomes for open space provision in changing communities.

Open Space Planning and Design Guide


Facilities for Future Generations - A blueprint for sport and active recreation in Wales – Sport Wales

The Facilities for Future Generations blueprint has been designed to complement existing national and local capital investment schemes, initiatives like the Sports Facilities Capital Loan Scheme and the All Wales Artificial Turf Pitch Vision and Guidance. The intention is to provide a point of reference and support, to help inform responsible and sustainable decision making on the design, provision and maintenance of sport and recreation facilities.

Community Sport Strategy 2012-2020 – Sport Wales

The Community Sport Strategy has been developed to set out clear priorities and focus energy to enable a dramatic shift in the range and number of people involved in sport. It also provides further guidance to those responsible for planning and running sport in Wales.

A Framework for Recreation in Canada 2015 - Pathways to Wellbeing – Canada Parks & Recreation Association (ISSUU presentation)

Recreation provides multiple pathways to wellbeing for individuals, communities, and for our built and natural environments. This paper and the Framework for Recreation in Canada 2015 which it describes allows for a timely re-visioning of recreation's capacity for achieving wellbeing.

Planning for Sport – Sport England

Sport England aim to ensure positive planning for sport, enabling the right facilities to be provided in the right places. To achieve this our planning objectives are to seek to protect, enhance and provide facilities that are fit for purpose to meet demands for participation now and in the future.

This topical paper provides the research findings for identifying the key strategic directions for a liveable high-density city, which is one of the three major building blocks proposed for Hong Kong 2030+ to help Hong Kong become a liveable, competitive and sustainable “Asia’s World City”. The physical form and design of our city is important in making our city more liveable.

Planning and Urban Design for Liveable High-Density City - Planning Department



idProfile provides free demographic resources such as community profiles, population forecasts, economic profiles and social atlases to help decision-making.


REMPLAN’s ERP Explorer provides Estimated Residential Population (ERP) data for your area of interest.

The Common Planning Assumptions are agreed information assets (data sets, models and analytical tools) for use by NSW Government, and others, to prepare proposals, business plans and strategies that rely on projections.

The National Infrastructure Database provides facilities data for sport facilities in NSW and Australia.

Business cases are a key tool to inform evidence-based investment decisions by government.

The objective of developing a robust a business case is to ensure resource allocation decisions are well timed, offer value for money, consider and mitigate risks and are consistent with Government priorities and objectives. NSW Treasury provides guidance on how to develop a business case.

The purpose of this Treasury policy and guidelines paper is to provide guidance and promote a consistent approach to appraisal and evaluation of public projects, programs and policies across the NSW Government. Agencies should use this NSW Government Guide to Cost-Benefit Analysis (Guide) when assessing all significant government projects, programs, policies and regulations.

NSW Government Guide to Cost-Benefit Analysis – NSW Treasury

Using school facilities – NSW Department of Education

Licences and leases of school facilities – NSW Department of Education

State Sporting Organisations

Several State Sporting Organisations have developed Facility Strategies for their sports (see examples below). For further information, please contact the SSOs directly.

More information

To discuss the development of a sport facility strategy or it your sport has a facility plan/strategy and is not listed above please contact Infrastructure Strategy, Planning and Delivery

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