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Could Brisbane be an Olympics infrastructure success story?
In welcome news for Queensland’s construction and infrastructure sector and the wider state economy, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has designated Brisbane as its preferred candidate city to host the 2032 Summer Olympic Games.
Brisbane the official front runner for 2032 Olympics
The IOC has invited Brisbane and the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) to start a targeted and in-depth dialogue. Delivering this news at a recent press conference, IOC president Thomas Bach said: “the decision was made to advance the host election process at this particular moment given the uncertainty the world is facing right now, which is expected to continue even after the COVID-19 health crisis is over”.
“The IOC is considering seizing the momentum offered by the excellent project of Brisbane 2032 and the AOC to bring stability to the Olympic Games, the athletes, the IOC and the whole Olympic Movement. The Future Host Commission will now start a targeted dialogue with the Brisbane 2032 Committee and the AOC”.
Key reasons why Brisbane 2032 was proposed by IOC for the targeted dialogue include a high level of experience in hosting major international sports events and strong support from all three levels of government. Queensland’s existing infrastructure is also listed as a key factor.
Brisbane’s very advanced concept proposes a sustainable Games which is fully aligned with the IOC’s Olympic Agenda 2020+. The Games would use 80 - 90 per cent existing or temporary venues, while current hotel accommodation inventory already meets requirements.
Other reasons stated include the Games’ alignment with South-East Queensland’s long-term strategy to improve local transport infrastructure, reflect demographic change, and stimulate economic growth. The IOC said that after being successfully implemented for the 2018 Commonwealth Games, existing and planned transport infrastructure and experience in traffic management can adequately meet demands.
Olympics would revitalise Brisbane and SE QLD venues
A new 80,000-seat Brisbane stadium would be part of the bid, with Albion Park appearing the preferred location. With its 42,000 capacity, unless it is expanded, the Gabba is considered too small to serve as the main stadium. The venue’s transport links will improve after the opening of the Cross River Rail project with a new underground station next to the Gabba.
Austadiums said the Olympics would revitalise Brisbane’s stadium infrastructure, with existing venues (including the Brisbane Aquatic Centre, Brisbane Entertainment Centre & Queensland Sport & Athletic Centre) needing either significant redevelopments to bring them up to standard, or new replacements.
A new aquatics centre and indoor sports centre are proposed. Other venues potentially in the final bid include Suncorp Stadium, the Queensland Tennis Centre, Nissan Arena and the Sleeman Sports Complex.
Austadiums.com noted that the bid extends beyond Brisbane to include South-East Queensland and the Sunshine Coast. South-East Queensland will focus on fast-tracking big ticket infrastructure items such as transport.
A host of Gold Coast venues used for the Commonwealth Games, including Metricon Stadium and Cbus Super Stadium, form part of the bid. It should also boost Sunshine Coast Stadium’s redevelopment hopes, after recently missing out on federal funding.
The Olympic Games Rio 2016 were a true success story. As well as being the most-watched ever - half the world’s population tuned in - the Games left behind a great legacy for the city of Rio de Janeiro.
Job creation accounted for 82% of Rio’s local economic growth, with workers at the base of the social pyramid mostly benefitting from the increase in labour income. Access to high-quality public transport for the city’s citizens increased some 40% with new bus and metro lines.
In addition to new transport infrastructure, 70 new hotels and residences were built, creating 16,000 jobs, and parts of the city including the historic Porto Maravilha area were revitalised. Many venues were repurposed for ongoing public use.
The canoe slalom venue has become a public swimming pool, while the handball venue was converted into four schools. Six Olympic Park venues now form the nucleus of Brazil's first Olympic Training Centre and the Carioca Arena was converted into an Olympic Experimental School.
Olympic News, Olympic.org
Brisbane declared ‘preferred host’ for 2032 Olympics, but which stadiums could feature, AUStadiums.com
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