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Volume 6 No. 214


La Liga side Celta Vigo on Sunday announced an "ambitious" project, a "pioneering initiative in Spanish football," to integrate Celta fans worldwide "on a virtual level," according to the EFE. The club said in a statement about its Balaídos stadium, "Balaídos will become a universal stadium with many new interactions between the club and its fan base." The project's objective is to "connect the team to its fans using smartphones on a private, intelligent platform, which will be active during all Celta games to allow for personalized experiences and innovative services." To "accomplish this," Celta signed a technology partnership with IoT Partners (EFE, 1/12).

A A$338M ($304M) makeover of Australia's tennis headquarters will include a footbridge from Birrarung Marr to Melbourne Park and a new 5,000-seat outdoor show court, according to James Campbell of the HERALD SUN. Victoria Premier Denis Napthine announced on Sunday "the second stage of an upgrade to the iconic Melbourne sporting precinct that will see the new footbridge create a western entrance to Melbourne Park." Napthine said that major events such as the Australian Open "delivered a massive boost to the Victorian economy and created new jobs." Napthine: "This $338 million upgrade to Melbourne Park is critical to continue attracting global sporting, music and other cultural events such as the Australian Open." When the redevelopment of Melbourne Park is complete, Rod Laver Arena will have a seating capacity of 15,000 and Hisense Arena 10,500. Margaret Court Arena "will have increased" from 6,000 seats to 7,500, and the show courts will seat 11,000. The redevelopment "will also feature a new central terrace and roof; enlarged garden square, upgraded bathroom, food and beverage amenities, and a new media centre." The State Government will provide more than A$298M for the upgrade with the Melbourne and Olympic Parks Trust kicking in A$40M (HERALD SUN, 1/11).

Russia's Cabinet of Ministers said that around $34M "will be spent on training grounds for the 2018 football World Cup," according to R-SPORT. The "preparation program for the football extravaganza provides for the construction and renovation of 113 training facilities, 48 of which are listed as 'pre-match training grounds' and the other 65 of which are 'grounds at team base camps.'" The overall cost of the 32-team World Cup is estimated at $20B, with "most of that sum being spent on the 12 stadiums required and their immediate infrastructure in the 11 host cities" (R-SPORT, 1/12).