Rethink Urged on $2.7bn Gabba Olympic Games Plan

The Queensland government has been urged to reconsider the multi-billion-dollar reconstruction of one of the state’s landmark stadiums—the Gabba.

The call came from a senate committee looking into Brisbane’s preparedness to host the 2032 Olympic Games.

In its interim report, the committee cast doubt on the need to spend $2.7 billion reconstructing the Gabba, in Brisbane’s inner south-east.

“It may be unwise and inappropriate for the government to insist that a redeveloped Gabba host the athletics for the Games,” the report released this week said.

The cost of the stadium project, which includes adding 8000 seats to increase its capacity to 50,000, has more than doubled since it was announced.

The area around the stadium in Woolloongabba and Southbank was declared a priority development area, prompting a slew of development proposals in the locale.

It is planned that the new Gabba would be the official home of the Brisbane Olympic and Paralympic Games.

▲ A render of the planned whitewater centre for Olympic canoeing and kayak events at Redbank.

“State governments should not use major events as an excuse to fast-track already-planned urban development against the wishes of their citizens and local communities, and without due diligence,” the report said.

The committee also raised concerns about plans to build a whitewater centre for kayaking and canoeing at Redland, saying that such facilities purpose-built for the Sydney Games could be used instead as a cost-effective option.

In the report, the senators recommended the Federal and Queensland governments, affected communities and Games organising bodies work together to urgently review the decision to host athletics at the Gabba.

“The review should consider the feasibility of alternative options, including using existing infrastructure, and work to find a solution that is acceptable to these communities,” the report said.

“This is an interim report, so we’ll have a lot more to say about the Olympics in our final report,” committee chair and Nationals senator Matt Canavan told media.

“I do think those local communities of East Brisbane and Redlands need a lot more consultation.

“We’re going to put on a good Games, I’m really confident of that, but I do think we’ve fallen down in how we’ve involved the local community.”

The final report is expected to be delivered in December.

Article source: Queensland Property Investor

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