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Coordinates : 37°49′22″S 144°58′48″E / 37.82267°S 144.98005°E / -37.82267; 144.98005 The Melbourne
Melbourne
Sports and Entertainment Precinct with Melbourne
Melbourne
Park being situated between Yarra Park
Yarra Park
and the MCG to the left and AAMI Park and Olympic Park to the right

MELBOURNE PARK is a sports venue in the Melbourne
Melbourne
Sports and Entertainment Precinct in Melbourne
Melbourne
, Victoria , Australia
Australia
. Since 1988, Australian\'s bicentenary , Melbourne
Melbourne
Park has been home of the Australian Open
Australian Open
Grand Slam tennis tournament, which is played annually in January. The park has facilities capable of hosting basketball , netball , music concerts and other events. In the past Melbourne
Melbourne
Park has hosted ice skating , cycling , international swimming and motorsport events.

Melbourne
Melbourne
Park is owned by Melbourne
Melbourne
& Olympic Parks, which also runs the adjacent Melbourne Rectangular Stadium . The Yarra Park
Yarra Park
section of the Sports and Entertainment Precinct is run separately.

CONTENTS

* 1 History * 2 Events

* 3 Arenas

* 3.1 Rod Laver Arena
Rod Laver Arena
* 3.2 Hisense Arena * 3.3 Margaret Court Arena * 3.4 Show Courts

* 4 Redevelopments * 5 Transport and access * 6 See also * 7 References * 8 External links

HISTORY

Melbourne
Melbourne
Park was built in 1988 beside the Jolimont Yard as a new precinct to host the Australian Open
Australian Open
. The previous venue, Kooyong Lawn Tennis
Tennis
Club , had become too small for the burgeoning tournament. Melbourne
Melbourne
Park's construction was completed in 1988 at a cost of at least $94 million. The unveiling of the new precinct was met with incredibly positive reviews by players and spectators, with some labelling the facilities and amenities the best of the four Grand Slams . Expansion of the precinct next occurred in 1996, when a further $23 million was invested to create two fully seated and larger show courts and eight new ‘Ace’ courts, as well as a large grassy space, now known as ‘Garden Square’.

The park was originally known as FLINDERS PARK until 1996, when then-Premier , Jeff Kennett decided to rename it Melbourne
Melbourne
Park, mainly to advertise the name "Melbourne" to a wide international audience. The decision was met with strong opposition, and was compared by some to renaming Stade Roland Garros
Stade Roland Garros
(home to the French Open in Paris) "Paris Park". However, over the years, the name has become accepted by Melbournians.

The organisation responsible for managing the precinct is the Melbourne
Melbourne
& Olympic Parks Trust, which was established in October 1995 in accordance with the provisions of the amended Melbourne
Melbourne
"> Rod Laver Arena
Rod Laver Arena

Formerly known as Centre Court, Rod Laver Arena
Rod Laver Arena
has a capacity of nearly 15,000 and has a retractable roof. The arena was opened in 1988 prior to that year\'s championships and was originally known as the NATIONAL TENNIS CENTRE AT FLINDERS PARK. It was not until January 2000 that the arena was named after one of the greatest Australian tennis players, Rod Laver .

Rod Laver Arena
Rod Laver Arena
has played host to some of the most memorable tennis matches, such as:

* Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal
vs. Roger Federer
Roger Federer
(2009 "> Hisense Arena

The second largest court is Hisense Arena (known for non-commercial purposes as the Multi-Purpose Venue, as it was referred to during the 2006 Commonwealth Games
2006 Commonwealth Games
), which was opened in 2000. It has a capacity of 10,500, and also has a retractable roof. Completed in 2000 for a cost of $65 million, the arena has hosted a wide variety of sporting and other events since its inception including boxing bouts such as Anthony Mundine vs. Lester Ellis , as well as Grand Finals in netball and basketball and concerts performed by Scissor Sisters
Scissor Sisters
, BB King
BB King
, Nicki Minaj
Nicki Minaj
and One Direction
One Direction
.

During the Australian Open
Australian Open
, Hisense Arena hosts numerous day and night matches up to the end of the fourth round. Most notably it is the venue of the longest women's singles match in a Grand Slam. Francesca Schiavone defeated Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-4 1-6 16-14 in four hours and forty-four minutes at the fourth round of the 2011 Australian Open
Australian Open
. Hisense Arena has been accessible for Australian Open patrons with a ground pass (i.e.: cheapest form of ticketing available) since 2015 and subsequently the arena has developed a reputation for being, like most outdoor courts, an incredibly passionate venue with terrific atmosphere, particularly when Australians are playing on the court.

MARGARET COURT ARENA

Main article: Margaret Court Arena Margaret Court Arena

Formerly known as Show Court 1, Margaret Court Arena was opened in 1988 along with the Melbourne
Melbourne
Park precinct. Originally seating 6,000 spectators, the arena underwent a renovation which increased the capacity to 7,500 and added a retractable roof – the fastest of its kind in the world, opening or closing in just five minutes. The redevelopment was completed prior to the 2015 Australian Open
Australian Open
. The arena is also used for regular music concerts and is one of the two home courts of Super Netball
Netball
team the Melbourne
Melbourne
Vixens .

Conjecture over the name of the arena has caused significant debate in Australian
Australian
society. Named in honour of Margaret Court , statistically Australia's greatest Grand Slam singles player, Court has sparked controversy over her public views on LGBT
LGBT
issues. As recently as 2017 there were calls from several public figures for the arena's name to be changed.

SHOW COURTS

Aside from a further 35 match day and practice courts, some of which have temporary standing attached to them for the Australian
Australian
Open, there are two Show Courts at Melbourne
Melbourne
Park (named Show Court 2 and Show Court 3), each with a permanent seating capacity of approximately 3,000. Like all the other tennis courts at Melbourne
Melbourne
Park, these show courts remain as tennis courts throughout the year and are available for use by the general public.

REDEVELOPMENTS

The Melbourne
Melbourne
Park Master Plan has been the process by which the precinct has undergone three significant stages of redevelopment since 2010. The Stage 1 redevelopment included the construction of a new Eastern Plaza to host an elite tennis training facility and a new bridge linking Melbourne
Melbourne
Park to the nearby AAMI Park stadium and Olympic Park Oval , as well as an upgrade to Margaret Court Arena . The Eastern Plaza Tennis
Tennis
Training Facility, which was later named the National Tennis
Tennis
Centre and features eight indoor and 13 outdoor courts (including eight European -style clay courts ) was unveiled in January 2013. Margaret Court Arena (which had its seating capacity expanded to 7,500 and a retractable roof installed) was opened ahead of the 2015 Australian Open
Australian Open
. The cost of the Stage 1 redevelopment was $366 million.

Stage 2 of the redevelopment began in earnest June 2015, when it was announced that Rod Laver Arena
Rod Laver Arena
would undergo a redevopment of its exterior facade and interior features, such as bars and other player facilities. The broader second stage upgrade included a new footbridge linking Melbourne
Melbourne
Park and Birrarung Marr and an Administration and Media Building, to house Tennis
Tennis
Australia
Australia
and Melbourne
Melbourne
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* ^ " Melbourne
Melbourne
Park". Austadiums. 12 January 2014. * ^ Colebatch, Tim (12 January 1988). "Melbourne\'s state-of-the-art tennis centre is a knockout". The Age
The Age
. Melbourne
Melbourne
, Australia
Australia
. Retrieved 21 October 2013. * ^ A B "10Best: The History of Melbourne
Melbourne
Park, Home of the Australian
Australian
Open". USA Today. 1 December 2012. * ^ A B C "Overview". Melbourne
Melbourne
& Olympic Parks Trust. 1 January 2016. * ^ Colebatch, Tim (12 January 1988). "Melbourne\'s state-of-the-art tennis centre is a knockout". The Age
The Age
. Melbourne
Melbourne
, Australia
Australia
. Retrieved 21 October 2013. * ^ "Looking back at the Australian Open
Australian Open
from Kooyong to Melbourne Park". Herald Sun. 18 January 2013. * ^ "Centre court named after Laver". New Straits Times
New Straits Times
. Kuala Lumpur , Malaysia
Malaysia
. 22 December 1999. p. 43. Retrieved 21 October 2013. * ^ "Nadal Defeats a Tearful Federer in Australia". The New York Times. 1 February 2009. * ^ Eckstein, Jeremy (17 February 2012). " Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic
vs. Rafael Nadal: Why Aussie Open Final Is Greatest Match Ever". Bleacher Report . Retrieved 2 February 2015. * ^ "Hewitt beats Federer". The Age. 21 September 2003. * ^ "History". Hisense Arena. 1 January 2017. * ^ "Schiavone wins a record-breaking, three set marathon". The Sydney Morning Herald. 23 January 2011. * ^ "The people’s court or the tennis court?". The Sydney Morning Herald. 1 February 2015. * ^ "Andy Murray enjoyed \'great atmosphere\' on Hisense". Eurosport. 20 January 2017. * ^ "History". Margaret Court Arena. 1 January 2017. * ^ " Margaret Court Arena to weatherproof Australian
Australian
Open". Tennis Australia. 21 July 2014. * ^ "Martina, PM weigh in on Court". The Australian. 26 May 2017. * ^ " Margaret Court Arena: former premier John Cain says name should stay". The Age. 27 May 2017. * ^ "Event Guide". 2014 Australian Open
Australian Open
(IBM). 4 November 2013. Archived from the original on 4 November 2013. * ^ "National Tennis
Tennis
Centre delivered a year ahead of schedule". Major Projects Victoria. 14 January 2013. * ^ "National Tennis
Tennis
Centre". Only Melbourne. 1 January 2015. * ^ " Australian Open
Australian Open
could be played entirely indoors, as Margaret Court Arena gets retractable roof". ABC News. 4 January 2015. * ^ A B C D " Melbourne
Melbourne
Park Masterplan Redevelopment Overview (2012-20)". Major Projects Victoria. 1 June 2017. * ^ " Rod Laver Arena
Rod Laver Arena
plans unveiled". SBS. 2 June 2015. * ^ A B "Upgrading Rod Laver Arena". Rod Laver Arena. 1 July 2016. * ^ "History Made As Tanderrum Bridge Opens". premier.vic.gov.au. 22 December 2016. Archived from the original on 3 May 2017. * ^ " Melbourne
Melbourne
Park Administration and Media Building". Built Projects. 1 November 2016. *