So Brisbane has been formally declared as host of the 2032 Olympic Games, but what would that look like?
Is the Queensland capital a world city like Doha or Budapest?
Not if you ask Brisbane’s opponents to host the 1992 Games. They argued the city was too small and unknown on the international stage.
This time around, the Sunshine State’s bid earned repeated praise from the International Olympic Committee.
Brisbane 2032 Olympics facts and figures
- Where: The ‘River City’ of Brisbane
- Proposed dates: July 23 to August 8, 2032; Paralympics August 24-September 5, 2032
- Expected average maximum daily temperatures: Between 20 and 23 degrees Celsius
- Main venue: The Brisbane Cricket Ground (or the Gabba as it’s commonly known)
- Number of other venues: 32 venues in south-east Queensland will be used to host 28 Olympic sports. There will be a total of 37 competition venues, 84 per cent of which are existing or temporary
- Distance from Brisbane’s CBD: Athletes from 22 sports would compete across 21 venues, most of which would be five kilometres from the CBD
- Competition venues outside of Brisbane: Seven in the Gold Coast, four in the Sunshine Coast
- Athletes’ accommodation: Villages in Brisbane (10,729 beds), Gold Coast (2600 beds), Sunshine Coast (1374 beds) and Kooralbyn (1100 beds)
- Number of international tourists it’s expected to attract: 3.6 million.
What our 2032 Olympic venues will look like
To get the Gabba ready for the opening ceremony, it will need a major redevelopment that will cost more than $1 billion.
The Gabba wasn’t even picked to host the opening cricket Test of the summer.
So you’d be relieved to know the stadium is being redeveloped regardless, and the fact that not every venue in Brisbane needs renovation.
Such as Lang Park (also known as Suncorp Stadium), which is more than ready to host the Olympic football tournaments, unlike the rugby union Ballymore Stadium, which would need to be converted to host hockey.
How about Brisbane’s CBD for swimming and water polo?
An aquatics centre is proposed to be constructed inside the state government’s planned 18,000-seat live venue, which will be built over Roma Street train station in the CBD.
The centre would be made ready to host the swimming and water polo competitions.
Then when they are over and the athletes have headed back home, it will be redeveloped into an entertainment centre.
Now, let’s crunch the numbers
The bid has detailed a $5 billion cost of hosting the Games in Brisbane,
Bid documents forecast most of the Games income will come from ticket sales of about $1.3 billion and domestic sponsorship of $1.7 billion.
The IOC’s global sponsorship would contribute another $446 million.
Worldwide broadcast rights would be worth at least $951 million, or 19 per cent of the Brisbane Games’ budget – that figure could grow during future television rights negotiations.
Brisbane’s bid committee has also earmarked spending $690 million on existing and new venues and also and temporary infrastructure for various venues.
The bid predicts economic benefits of hosting of about $17 billion nationally, with about $8 billion of that for Queensland.
The most important thing of all?
Brisbane will go down in the history books as the third Australian city after Melbourne (1956) and Sydney (2000) to host an Olympics.
And Australia will be only the second country after the United States to host Summer Games in three different cities.
So what’s not to like?
Its high percentage of existing venues, its experience in organising major events … its favourable weather?
But still, when Sydney Olympics gold medallist Natalie Cook would travel around the world, people would continue to ask her: “Where’s Brisbane?”
The Queensland Olympic Council president would have to get out the map and show them it’s just an hour north of Sydney by plane, she told AFP.
Now that it will be hosting “the biggest sporting event on the planet” according to Australia’s Sports Minister Richard Colbeck, the city’s name will roll off the tongue of people everywhere.