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Sydney's White Elephants bleeding money

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Also, can I assume that the Olympic Park will have a lot of say of hosting some events for the 2009 World Masters Games?

Sydney 2009 World Masters Games

I think the World Masters Games will be very similar to the

Olympic Games in the way they are staged, all but minus the

crowds and the really tight security.

There will be crowds I'm sure, but not really huge crowds.

I think every main venue at Sydney Olympic Park is being

used, and it will be the hub of the games, while other city

venues (a lot of them non-Olympic venues) will also be used.

I'm sure Sydney Olympic Park will also plan a lot of festivities

around that time for the event.

The World Youth day I don't know.

Well, Kay, it seems that the World Masters Games likes going to Australia. Even though there has been only SIX of them until Sydney 2009, attendance (by participants) is the highest in the previous 2 Australian occasions.

1994 @ Brisbane with about 23,659 participants from 71 countries, and;

2002 @ Melbourne with about 24,886 participants from 98 countries.

Could Sydney grab the last 2 attributes to make an "Australian clean sweep?"

a) the only one held in Europe so far (@ Denmark) had 37 sports in its program in 1989.

B) the only one held in America so far (@ Portland, Oregon) had 102 countries participating in 1998.

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As you said, it is an area specifically designed to be able to handle huge crowds.

Sorry - calling you out on this one - the transportation is woeful at Homebush.  On three recent occassions (NRL final, AFL match and the recent Rolling Stones concert) I have had to stand in a queue for well over an hour before being packed into a train carriage like a sardine for the ride back to the city that is always plagued with bloody signal faults.

The rail link needs more done to it - at the Stones show for instance they had maybe 5% of those going to the city heading west instead - yet the same amount of trains headed in that direction.  What would be fairer is all departures going to Strathfield and then onto the city. Those heading west could change there.  I had this problem most days during Sydney 2000 as well - but that was understandable just due to the volumes of people.  However, the NRL final was 80,000 people.  The AFL match drew 52,000 and the Stones 55,000.  Admittedly the Stones was when the show was on - but the show finished an hour prior to the end of the concert.  Worst is that there are no scheduled bus runs that late to get people out in other directions - so you are forced to use the trains.  At least in Melbourne all the big venues have multiple transport options.

OK rant over.

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Actually, I'd agree with you on that one. I can't remember if it was in one of the posts on this this thread or another, but I did say that one of the probs with SOP was the transport _ that it at least needed a bus interchange or something as well.

Last time I tried to get back from a State of Origin at Telstra was a nightmare. I'm sure you've been in Sydney long enough now to realise that bagging the transport, and especially the trains, is favourite conversation starter number two (after real estate) _ with good reason.

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  • 2 months later...

A big, indeed, huge step towards making the precinct a vibrant, working area:

SYDNEY, July 12 AAP - About 8,000 Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) staff will move to purpose-built facilities in western Sydney.

The bank, which currently occupies several buildings in central Sydney and other parts of the city, will move about 5,000 employees to a new campus-style centre at Sydney Olympic Park at Homebush by 2009.

Another 3,000 staff will move to two buildings in Parramatta, due to be completed by the middle of next year.

About 4,000 staff will remain in the city.

``The bank is delighted to be supporting the growth of western Sydney and beyond as it develops an exciting campus-style facility at Sydney Olympic Park and new and refurbished accommodation at Parramatta,'' CBA chief executive Ralph Norris said in a statement.

NSW Premier Morris Iemma said the opening of the Homebush facility would double the size of the workforce at Sydney Olympic Park.

``This is a massive vote of confidence for Sydney Olympic Park and is a crucial step in the development of our plans for a world class business, residential and recreational precinct at Sydney Olympic Park,'' Mr Iemma said in a statement.


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  • 3 weeks later...

Well, another plan for Sydney Olympic Park (and this is a plan to use the precinct as a whole itself, rather than any particular venue).

SYDNEY, Aug 3 AAP - NSW Premier Morris Iemma says the state government is examining the feasibility of allowing a V8 Supercar race to take place at Sydney's former Olympic site.

V8 Supercars Australia wants to stage a race on a 3.4km street track at Homebush Bay.

Iemma today said the government was considering the proposal but wanted to know what the cost to taxpayers might be.

``We've had a proposal and it is being examined. We are interested, (but) it has to be feasible and workable,'' he told reporters.

``One of the issues that has to be resolved is what sort of contribution comes from government.''

Iemma said the impact of the event on people in new residential and business precincts which have been built since the Olympics would also be considered.

``It's a sporting precinct. It needs to be balanced against the quite legitimate residential and job activities that take place at Homebush,'' he said.


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Well, another plan for Sydney Olympic Park (and this is a plan to use the precinct as a whole itself, rather than any particular venue).

mmmm interesting! V 8 Supercars!!

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  • 2 months later...

More good news.

SYDNEY, Oct 11 AAP - Sydney's Olympic Park, which hosted the major events of the 2000 Olympics, is defying its white elephant tag, developers and the NSW government say.

Six years after the games, Acting NSW Premier John Watkins today ceremonially broke ground for the construction of the western Sydney site's fourth hotel.

``Critics claimed Sydney Olympic Park could suffer from an Olympics hangover but the reverse has actually been the case, Mr Watkins said.

Sofitel's new $65 million five-star hotel is scheduled for completion in 2008 in the precinct becoming known for corporate relocations.

Hotel boss David Baffsky said sceptics were quick to predict after the games that the park would become the city's newest white elephant.

``Well, I'm very pleased to tell you today that the very reason why we are going ahead with this development is because the white elephant has been a roaring success,'' he said.

The new hotel follows several other recent developments at Sydney Olympic Park, which have seen more than $159 million in new investment.

These developments include a new building for the NSW Institute of Sport, plans for an education precinct, the creation of a new regional parkland and the Commonwealth Bank of Australia's relocation of 5,000 staff to the park by 2009.

More than seven million people visited the park in 2005 to attend more than 4,000 events, according to government figures.


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In addition to the 5 star Sofitel, a Formule 1 motel is also being built, which along with the Novotel and the Ibis make up the 4 hotels on site.

The V8s won't be at Sydney Olympic Park next year.

The good news about the CBA's new buildings is that they will include retail premises including a supermarket I believe.

The development also means that there will be more direct public transport links to other areas in Sydney.

You can find some great renditions at Sydney Olympic Park's website.


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Just a few more notes:

For those with aspirations to sing at the Sydney Opera House, you can choose from the Concert Hall (capacity 2,679) or the Opera Theatre (capacity 1,547). lol :P

On public transport to Olympic Park, I agree, there are a few occasions where it is a nightmare.

I don't understand why they don't send more trains to Strathfield regularly, instead of the services to Lidcombe. As it is though, there are services to Lidcombe every 20 minutes.

And here's a tip for those attending big matches at Telstra Stadium and wishing to head to the city afterwards. Instead of waiting in line for 1 hour to get to the city platform (which can be the case if you're not one of the first people out of the stadium, as you've experienced)... go to the Western Suburbs platform, and change for a city train at Lidcombe. Heading to the city from there would also give you a less crowded train.

It might save you time... I haven't done it, but surely it's worth a try next time. :)

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  • 1 year later...

A new mega-deal has been arranged for Telstra Stadium, or should I say, Telstra Stadium No More, but ANZ Stadium

SYDNEY, Dec 12 AAP - Sydney's Olympic stadium will be renamed ANZ Stadium from next year in Australia's biggest ever naming rights sponsorship deal, the ANZ Bank announced today.

The seven-year, $31 million agreement will see the current Telstra Stadium - which was originally called Stadium Australia - re-badged from January 2008.

The bank said the $4.5 million annual sponsorship would be Australia's biggest stadium naming rights agreement.

Rugby great John Eales and Socceroos star John Aloisi joined officials for today's announcement of the new name and logo at Homebush.

``This stadium is one of the world's great sporting and entertainment arenas and, because of the 2000 Olympics, holds a unique place in the hearts of all Australians,'' ANZ CEO Mike Smith said.

``We are proud that it will carry the ANZ name.''

The stadium, most famous for Cathy Freeman's 400m gold medal run at the 2000 Games, is gearing up for a packed calendar in 2008.

Four NRL clubs - the Bulldogs, St George Illawarra, South Sydney and the Wests Tigers - will call it home and will also host two State of Origin fixtures and the league grand final.

A Bledisloe Cup clash, a Socceroos international and four Sydney Swans games are also on the schedule.

``The stature and scope of the new partnership will ensure ANZ Stadium is at the heart of Sydney's sporting and entertainment life for years to come,'' stadium boss Ken Edwards said.

An investment trust owned by ANZ, the Diversified Infrastructure Trust, acquired the stadium in April 2007.

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Who are the people runing this project? Is it the government or private individual? I know that Australia has gotten a famous billionair yet.

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Huh? Try in English please.

Hahaha...I write in haste - runing here and there in my room. I mean I don't know of any famous Australian billionair yet. I can't edit cos no edit on my gamesbids' editor.

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Hahaha...I write in haste - runing here and there in my room. I mean I don't know of any famous Australian billionair yet. I can't edit cos no edit on my gamesbids' editor.

Okay _ think Rupert Murdoch, James Packer, Frank Lowy .....

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  • 3 weeks later...
<font color='#000000'>As I and others have said, Sydney's venues ARE being used and are doing quite well. It's just the big public precinct _ basically a huge outdoor plaza area with a few big parks next to it _ that is costing money to maintain. As it would in any city.

Sydney Olympic Park's problem is it hasn't really found a niche as a destination in its own right since the 2000 Games, beyond being somewhere you pass through on the way to football games and concerts etc at the various venues there. At the moment, it is pretty lively and full _ the yearly Sydney Royal Easter Show is in swing. But in a few weeks those crowds will go and it will be emptyish again. It's not as if it isn't a pleasant place to go _ it's a stop on the way for any visitors that come to Sydney that I show around _ but it just needs a bit more to attract people in its own right.

On my various visits since 2000, one problem I've come across is the lack of restaurants and food outlets to encourage one to come early and linger before a footy game or concert. Apart from one largish pub with (pretty awful) fast food, there's only one smallish restaurant at the Novotel there and a very small cafe/muffin shop. I know it's a bit of a chicken and egg situation _ why do you need eating venues when you only get crowds a few times a month? _ but it would be a start.

A bit more transport would help. At the moment, if you don't have a car, about the only transport there is the special trains to Olympic Park station. Maybe a bus hub nearby would help get more people traffic through (and give some incentive for more retail/eating facilities).

And then perhaps start organising more community events there outside of sports events/concert times. I once spent a very nice Saturday afternoon/evening there taking some aunts who were visiting from Sweden to an aboriginal cultural festival at Bicentennial Park _ it was great, with stands selling handicrafts, bush tucker and a great sound and light show at the end. More of this sort of thing would help.

Ultimately, it seems the NSW Government's plan also involves opening up more nerarby areas for housing development. As long as it's done well (and most of the developments nearby are good so far _ medium to upmarket residential areas rather than low-income), it would also work as a further boost to get more life to the area.</font>

Well said.

I think many cities are learning from this (Cape Town certainly has) and are opting for locations closer to the city centre and major attractions. FIFA's 2007 technical recommendations for venues describes the ideal venue/location as one close to the city centre and major motorways, close by to major attraction and hotels, if its wants to host major events.

Source: FIFA 2007, Football Stadiums, Technical recommendations and requirements

Stadium location

1.A stadium should be situated in a location which is sufficiently large to provide spacious and safe external public circulation/activity areas and marshalling space for service vehicles and functions. While it is normal for the arrival of spectators at the stadium to be spread over a sufficiently lengthy period to prevent undue congestion near the turnstiles, the majority of spectators will seek to leave the stadium at the same time, resulting in significant space requirements.

2.The availability of sufficient external space will also allow for future extension or redevelopment.Many famous stadiums around the world are in heavily developed locations with roads, buildings and canals immediately adjacent on all sides Their renovation and redevelopment possibilities are restricted by their limited site size and this is not a desirable situation. . Large sites reduce the probability that the site may have to be abandoned in the long term, or even in the short term, because of its inability to accommodate some unforeseen development requirement. Larger sites also increase the possibility of providing adequate on-site parking areas – a requirement which will probably remain for the foreseeable future.

3. As a site becomes more suburban and isolated from public transport, it will have to become larger to accommodate the required additional parking. In this situation, convenient and multiple access to major roads and motorways is essential. In an ideal world, the ultimate location would probably be a large city-centre site with good access to public transport, major roads and motorways and parking that can be used by others when games are not being played. This reduces the possibility that large parking areas will be used for as little as 100 to 200 hours per year. A stadium with ambitions to host international events is more attractive to event holders if it is within comfortable reach of hotels and active commercial environments and at least one international airport.

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