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Runners compete at the 2014 Brisbane Commonwealth Games.

Regional Victoria to host 2026 Commonwealth Games

Victoria has been confirmed as the host of the 2026 Commonwealth Games, with the state’s regions set to shine on the world stage

Written by
Eliza Campbell

Stunning regional Victoria is about to get some global attention, with today's announcement that Geelong, Bendigo, Ballarat and Gippsland will host the 2026 Commonwealth Games. 

The news comes after a period of negotiations between the Commonwealth Games Federation and Commonwealth Games Australia following the proposed concept delivered by the Andrew Labor government last month. Four regional hubs will be established, complete with their own athletes' village and sports program. Each hub will host athletes, officials and fans following the Opening Ceremony at the MCG in Melbourne.

“It’s a great honour to have Victoria chosen as the host venue for the 2026 Commonwealth Games – we can’t wait to welcome the world to all of our state,” said premier Daniel Andrews. “The Commonwealth Games in regional Victoria is great for jobs, hospitality and our economy.”

Victoria 2026 will establish a new multi-city model for the games. Shepparton is also set to host sporting and cultural events in the lead-up to the games, and a strong Paralympic sports program for greater Victoria is already in the works. The games will also mean a huge investment in community infrastructure – including affordable housing in the regions and modern sports infrastructure that residents will be able to use for decades to come.

It's estimated the 2026 Commonwealth Games will contribute more than $3 billion to Victoria's economy, creating more than 600 full-time equivalent jobs before the Games, 3,900 jobs during the games and a further 3,000 jobs beyond the Closing Ceremony.

A Victoria-wide program of live sites and activations will ensure visitors are welcomed in every corner of the state, with the Queen’s Baton Relay to traverse the regions in the weeks leading up to the Opening Ceremony.

Love regional Victorian? These are our eight favourite day trips from Melbourne.

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