Sport Olympics Queensland 2032 Olympic Games would be ‘a different beast’

Queensland 2032 Olympic Games would be ‘a different beast’

Olympic events would be held throughout Queensland, including the Gold Coast, in 2032. Photo: AAP
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Australian Olympic Committee president John Coates says an Olympic Games in Queensland in 2032 would offer a community benefit, but not necessarily come at a huge cost.

The Queensland government on Monday announced it would seek to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games once it gains federal government support.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk’s cabinet approved the bid to bring the event back to Australia for the third time, after Melbourne hosted in 1956 and Sydney in 2000.

The cost of preparing for and hosting the international sporting event is unclear, but that will be worked out between local, state and federal governments over the next six months.

The International Olympic Committee would put up $2.6 billion towards the operating costs.

Ms Palaszczuk said securing the Games could net $7.4 billion in economic benefits for the state, accelerate infrastructure development, create about 130,000 jobs and open up trade opportunities.

AOC chief Coates said his organisation supported the bid, which would come under new guidelines designed to reduce costs after criticism of recent Games that left sour legacies in most countries.

“Hosting an Olympic Games these days is a very different beast,” Coates said.

“The ‘new norm’ changes announced in 2018 ensure future hosts use existing facilities or temporary facilities.

“If there’s a lasting sport and community benefit, then new facilities can play a part, but the focus is on delivering a Games that is cost-effective and flexible.”

Previous Games have been a financial burden for host cities, with Los Angeles in 1984 the only one to turn a profit since the 1970s.

The NSW auditor-general said the Sydney Games cost the public about $2 billion.

London’s 2012 Olympics generated $5.2 billion compared to the $18 billion shelled out in costs after its projected expenditure blew out three-fold, while several cities have backed out of recent bids over cost concerns.

Queensland already has about 80 per cent of the sporting infrastructure needed to host Games events, however spaces to hold an athletes village and a media village are yet to be finalised.

Options include upgrading Brisbane’s QEII stadium or transforming the Albion Park raceway, with the potential for an opening ceremony at an upgraded Gabba.

A successful bid could result in 11,000 athletes from 206 countries descending on Queensland from July 23 to August 8, 2032, with 3.2 billion people tuning in around the globe.

Ms Palaszczuk has suggested regional towns could act as training camps for international teams arriving for the Games, or host lead-up events.

“We do have the capability to do this if we get everything right,” she told reporters on Monday.

She said Prime Minister Scott Morrison was more than supportive of the push for a bid during a meeting last week.

Federal sports minister Richard Colbeck said bringing the Olympics to Australia would motivate young and older Australians to get active and engage in more sport.

-with AAP 

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