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This celebrity boss is an easy man to underestimate

The greatest sporting administrator in Australian history, John Coates, wants to slow down and play more golf – and help run the Brisbane Olympic Games.

Credit: Financial Review

By Aaron Patrick Senior correspondent

Mar 19, 2021 – 11.18am

Over the two hours John Coates and I lunched at Beppi’s, a Sydney Italian restaurant so popular with the city’s elite it is almost a cliché, there was only one awkward moment.

I was trying to understand the key to Coates’ success. As the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) president for 31 years, a vice president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and president of the International Council of Arbitration for Sport, he is probably the most influential man in the history of Australian sports administration. Which is not bad for a bloke born with two congenitally dislocated hips.

“Richardson says I’m a hard man,” he says, referring to his golf partner, former Labor politician Graham Richardson.

“Is there any truth in that?” I ask.

For a few long seconds all I can hear is a conversation drifting through an open door from an adjacent room, where property developer and billionaire Harry Triguboff is celebrating his 88th birthday. Triguboff is regaling three friends or relatives with stories of his life, including the early years of the Jewish state.

Coates breaks the silence with a non-sequitur. “That is old Sydney in there, isn’t it?” he says.


We’re sitting at a two-man table in a cave-like room-cum-wine cellar. The maître d’ has complained three times that, if he knew the press was coming, we would have got a corner table.

I prefer our thoroughfare. Coates doesn’t mind either. He’s been celebrating victories at Beppi’s since he was a young property and tax lawyer, and regards a fancy meal and a bottle of wine as one of the pleasures of a successful life.

For the entree I choose the scampi, which I’ve a never had before. He orders figs, prosciutto and buffalo mozzarella. It will be two grilled snappers for mains.

Coates normally drinks red wine, but asks the waiter to choose a bottle of white to match the fish, a power move that I file away for another expenses meal.

“You look like the kind of man who will have French fries,” he says.

“Of course!” I reply, even though I’m trying to avoid fried food.

A pinot grigio from the 150,000-bottle-a-year Venica vineyard and winery in north-east Italy appears. With a muddy orange tint, the wine is lovely.

The waiter keeps refilling our glasses before they’re finished, which is annoying because I can’t work out if Coates is drinking more or less than me.

He wants to order a takeaway dinner for his wife, Orieta Pires, at his expense. I briefly consider offering to pay, but can’t overcome the fear of explaining to the Nine expenses system why it should cover a meal for a person not present.

For a man who has mastered the intricate politics of the Olympics movement, and brought one, and possibly two, summer games to his home country, Coates lacks the personal intensity of a celebrity CEO.

There is no flattery or charm, high-brow references or attempts to show how smart he is. Instead, there’s just a simple, unaffected delivery, coupled with a persistent smile. Occasionally, when he refers to “druggies” and “ratbags”, his language belies an earlier age. He would be an easy man to underestimate.

He’s also a man, at 70, wondering if the moment has come to slow down. He can have three meetings a week with Lausanne from 9pm to 3am, and then be up at five for the latest news from Tokyo. The workload has cut him off from friends, family, and Beppi’s.

“You love going out with blokes you went to law school with, or your partners, and that sort of stuff,” he says. “There are still a lot of friends like that but I don’t get that, or rarely now, because I am so busy. There are lunches where I go I can’t have a drink – I’ve got a meeting at five o’clock.

“I used to derive a lot of pleasure playing golf on Wednesday mornings with mates. I would miss a few meetings. We would kick off at 8 and I would get to work after that. I could be back playing golf now but I can’t find the time.

“So I have reflected on time to enjoy what you should be enjoying when you are 70. Obviously family and all of that sort stuff. My wife says our house is like the United Nations. Everyone comes in each night sort of thing.”


Coates changed Sydney’s identity by winning it the 2000 Olympic Games. He has similar hopes for greater Brisbane, which was selected as the preferred candidate for the 2032 games on February 24 by the International Olympic Committee’s executive board.

Coates is leading the bid. If Brisbane passes due diligence, the decision could be confirmed as early as July 20 or 21, when all 103 International Olympic Committee delegates are scheduled to meet at the Tokyo Olympic Games.

A week before our lunch, at 1.30am, Coates and other members of the Brisbane team presented their plan for the 2032 games to the IOC delegates. Coates played a video message from Prime Minister Scott Morrison, who spruiked Australia’s sporting credentials.

Apart from being hugely wasteful and prone to corruption, the Olympic junkets were terrific fun.

After the Australians finished speaking, a former Credit Suisse chief executive and IOC delegate, Tidjane Thiam, praised the resilience of Australia’s economy, which is important because the Olympic movement wants host cities that have the financial wherewithal to underpin their organisational capabilities.

“It was unbelievable,” Coates said. “It was like he was a member of our team.”

Under a voting system designed by Coates, IOC delegates are no longer entertained by bidding cities. Cities and states can make joint bids.

The new approach is designed to save money. Campaigns used to cost about $30 million, although Tokyo spent $50 million winning this year’s Olympics.

“There were too many losers and too much spent on losing bids,” he says.

Apart from being hugely wasteful and prone to corruption, the Olympic junkets were terrific fun. Coates clearly enjoyed them, and, as our bottle of wine is slowly drained, shares highlights.

In 1993, he accompanied former prime minister Gough Whitlam and wife Margaret to recruit votes for Sydney’s 2000 bid in Africa.

In a royal residence in the land-locked nation of Eswatini, also known as Swaziland, the trio met the polygamous king, Mswati III, and several of his wives.

On his knees, bowing to the monarch, Whitlam said, according to Coates: “What’s your secret?”

Winning Brisbane has been Coates’ dream since 1986, when he was rolled by wily IOC president Juan Antonio Samaranch, who delivered the ’92 games to his town of Barcelona, leaving Coates’ Brisbane campaign third and the young lawyer with a bad taste in his mouth.

“I actually was very hurt by that,” he says. “I believed the people we were speaking to. Richardson [the politician] said to me: ‘You can’t believe what people say to you.’”

The lesson wasn’t lost. When Samaranch sent a spy in 1993 to obtain intelligence on the Sydney 2000 campaign – the Spaniard preferred Beijing for geopolitical and economic reasons – Coates lied.

“I said: ’We’re f---ed. We’re 13 votes short.”

As Samaranch’s modern equivalent, Coates denies calling in any favours racked up during his Olympics tenure on behalf of Brisbane. Australia’s management of COVID-19 and last year’s bushfires helped because it signalled the competence of its political leaders and bureaucrats, he says. So too that Brisbane already has 85 per cent of the facilities needed.

The snapper arrives, accompanied by creamed spinach and a few improbably long chips. I enjoy it far more than the scampi, a type of lobster, in part because the fish is served with olives and what tastes like butter.

Coates is comfortable eating and talking simultaneously, and I have to balance a notepad on my knees to take notes and access my own dish.

He is eager to talk about Brisbane and the role he might play. He describes recently telling Queensland business leaders that they needed to start thinking about how to frame their city.

Every Olympics changes its host in some way, and not always for the better. Munich in ’72 will always be remembered for the massacre of Israeli athletes, Montréal in ‘76 became known for its cost blowout, and Moscow in ‘80 for the Americans’ Cold War boycott.

About 5 billion people watch the games – probably more next decade – and most are only dimly aware of Brisbane’s existence, a city even Melbourne regards as provincial.

“You have got to stop and think,” Coates says he told the businesspeople. “This is your time. What do you want to make of it?

“Melbourne was the centre of big business in the first half of last century. Then, Sydney emerged as one of the great financial centres of Asia. Perth became the world’s largest provider of energy in the last 50 years. The point I was trying to make is: what is Brisbane’s legacy?”

It is the most philosophical I have heard him all lunch.

Coates confirmed that next year he plans to retire as president of the Australian Olympic Committee, opening up one of Australia’s plummiest jobs.

The presidency provides an entrée into the international business and sporting elite, as Coates demonstrates by dropping a long list of friends and associates, from Prince Albert of Monaco (whose wedding to Olympic swimmer Charlene Wittstock he attended) to Nelson Mandela, the former president of South Africa.

The AOC also controls the $150 million Australian Olympic Foundation, which has made it financially independent of governments.

Coates will remain a member of the International Olympic Committee until 2024, and says he would like to be on the board overseeing a possible Brisbane Olympics and Paralympics. Coates says, without a hint of ego, that he wants to protect his international reputation by helping ensure Brisbane is successful.

“It’s up to them,” he says. “If they want to find a place for me, I’ll be available. I’m sitting in the position where I can read the budget, and I can say, ‘you don’t need this’, or, ‘you do need this’.”

The Australian Olympic Committee is the official bidder. Coates is on the Olympic Candidature Leadership Group, which oversees the bid and has representatives of all levels of government, including Prime Minister Scott Morrison, who is chairman, and Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.

If Brisbane is confirmed, the group will be replaced by an organising committee, which would take executive control of the 2032 Olympics and Paralympics, which the South-East Queensland Council of Mayors has estimated will cost $900 million.

Based on previous games, the committee would be referred to as BOCOG, for the Brisbane Organising Committee for the Olympic Games. Which could mean Coates would be known as the bog chairman.

In this case, the nomenclature might be changed.

 

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Coates plans to retire from AOC, wants to oversee Brisbane Games

Credit: Financial Review

By Aaron Patrick Senior correspondent

Mar 19, 2021 – 3.43pm

John Coates plans to retire as president of the Australian Olympic Committee in 2022 after more than three decades leading the national sporting body, but hopes to remain near the centre of Australia’s Olympic movement into his 80s.

Mr Coates, 70, said he would like to help oversee a Brisbane Olympic Games, which would be held when he is 82, as a member of the organising committee’s board.

As chair of the co-ordination commission of the Tokyo Olympics, Mr Coates said he helped identify $273 million in potential savings. He said his knowledge of Olympics budgeting could help Brisbane save money on the estimated $900 million operating cost.

The veteran sporting administrator and former rowing coach has run the Australian Olympic Committee since 1990. 

He promised in 2016, when he was unsuccessfully challenged by former Hockeyroo Danni Roche, that he would serve one more term.

Mr Coates confirmed that he intended to step down next year, but he will remain a member of the International Olympic Committee, which oversees the Games, until 2024.

The IOC has selected Brisbane as the preferred candidate for the 2032 Games, and could ratify the decision at a meeting of all 103 members just before the opening of the Tokyo Olympic Games in July.

Mr Coates’ position in the international movement would automatically make him a board member of the Brisbane Games organising committee until 2024.

After that, it would probably be up to the Queensland government to decide if the veteran sports administrator would remain on the committee, which might be known as BOCOG.

“It’s up to them if they want to find a place for me after that,” he told AFR Weekend. “I think I have plenty to offer, or if along the way I didn’t think I had anything to offer I’d pull the plug at the appropriate time.”

Mr Coates declined to name his preferred successor at the Australian Olympic Committee, but praised several board members, including Australian Sailing president Matt Allen, Athletics Australia president Mark Arbib, Volleyball Australia president Craig Carracher, Winter Olympic team chef de mission Ian Chesterman, Gymnastics Australia chief executive Kitty Chiller, Olympic fencer Evelyn Halls and Diving Australia chair Michael Murphy.

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Now the Olympic fast-rail Games begin

 

Credit: Financial Review

By Michael Bleby and Mark Ludlow

Feb 25, 2021 – 6.46pm

 

Brisbane has all but secured the Olympic victory it first tried for 29 years ago, but that goal will now trigger a debate about the infrastructure south-east Queensland needs to host the world’s biggest sporting event.

While proposals such as a fast rail line connecting the Sunshine Coast, Brisbane and Gold Coast have been around a long time and could play part of the South East Queensland City Deal that is still under negotiation, the 2032 announcement will bring debates about them to a head.

The new ethos around hosting Olympic Games is to avoid costly white elephants, and the Brisbane bid documents emphasise the use of transport infrastructure already in place, boosting it with higher frequency services and extra rolling stock as necessary.

The region’s mayors, however, want the infrastructure boost they say is crucial to serve the fast-growing population of their region.

“The organising committee is saying delivering the Games isn’t contingent on a faster rail network,” said Chris Mountford, the Queensland executive director of the Property Council of Australia.

“But when you take the Council of Mayors’ view, the idea of greater connectivity is almost the backbone of going for the Olympics. This has always been about a bid being an opportunity to fast-track the infrastructure south-east Queensland needs.”

Australian Olympic Committee president John Coates, who on Thursday locked in the sporting event he first tried to win for Brisbane in 1992 – but which went to Barcelona – also said the city’s advancement to exclusive negotiations with the International Olympic Committee meant infrastructure decisions were necessary.

“It’s not required for running the Games, but what the three levels of government would like to use this opportunity to do is work out what funding might come Queensland’s way … in the post-COVID infrastructure funding that is expected,” Mr Coates told The Australian Financial Review.

“It’s not required for a successful Games but would certainly help a great deal if the transport corridors, for example, are improved.”

Hosting the tournaments will give a huge boost to the Queensland economy, with (pre-pandemic) bid documents predicting the $4.5 billion event will create 130,000 direct jobs and boost international visitor expenditure by more than $20 billion between 2020 and 2036.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, who told State Parliament on Thursday that 90 per cent of the necessary infrastructure to hold the event was already in place, said “a new golden age” was beginning at a crucial time for the state.

“Now that we are starting our economic recovery it’s even more important that we do all we can to stimulate investment and create jobs,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“That is something the 2032 Queensland Olympics can achieve.”

While Mr Coates’ understanding of the bid process – held for the first time with the 2032 Games and under a system of which he was a key architect – might have made it easier for the bidding team to push ahead faster than rival candidates, the decisions on infrastructure and spending now facing the putative hosts will be just as hard.

This decision might struggle to shake questions about transparency, given Mr Coates’ deep knowledge about the process.

Since 2017, Mr Coates has headed the IOC’s Agenda 2020/New Norm committee, overseeing major overhauls to make host city candidacy less costly and to strip out the risks of corruption that came from having the IOC’s own executive board members vote for host cities.

The IOC is certainly keen to dispel any perception that a bid he led was advantaged.

“Mr Coates has not taken part in any kind of discussion of the IOC executive board concerning the reports of the future host commission or related directly or indirectly to the Olympic Games 2032,” Kristin Kloster Aasen, the Future Host Commission chairwoman, said.

“And all this is supervised by our compliance department, who at the beginning of every meeting is clearly explaining which member of the IOC executive board is conflicted with regard to different interests and is therefore excluded from the concerning discussions.”

Brisbane’s role as 2032 host has not yet been confirmed, a point Mr Coates emphasised on Thursday.

“Just because you’re the first mover, it doesn’t mean that a bid’s going to pass muster,” he said.

”I’m a key driver, as a member of the IOC executive board, of Agenda 2020, from which all of this flowed. Making the Games sustainable, taking the cost of bidding out, I’m a key driver of the savings that are being made in Tokyo.

”My legacy in that regard, or my role in that regard, is benefiting every city that hosts the Games, not just Brisbane. Absolutely, if I’ve got the experience and I can help in that regard, it’s going to be to everyone’s benefit.” 

 

 

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Coates shows why he is the master of Olympic politics

Credit: Financial Review

By Aaron Patrick Senior correspondent

Feb 25, 2021 – 4.34pm

 

At 11.30pm Wednesday, John Coates dropped off a call with the executive board of the International Olympic Committee and waited two hours to learn the results of 35 years of plotting, scheming and flattery.

The next morning, the president of Australia’s Olympic Committee announced that, under a corporate-style selection process he had helped devise, exclusive negotiations would begin with Brisbane to host the 2032 Summer Olympics.

“We’re the only one,” he said, aside a beaming Queensland premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk. “The other cities that had shown interest, that had presented, they’ve been parked for a future games.”

From third to front runner

It was a measure of Coates’ perseverance that he never gave up on Brisbane, which the former coxswain had proposed for the 1992 games. The river city came third in a contest orchestrated by IOC president Juan Antonio Samaranch, who delivered the 25th modern Olympiad to his Catalan home town, Barcelona.

“He had a determined view that the next games should always go to Queensland/Brisbane,” said Mike Tancred, Coates’ publicist for 20 years. “It’s been a vision of his for a long, long time.”

Brisbane’s victory is Coates’ success, and demonstrates his skill at convincing the bureaucratic and political Olympic movement to save itself – and back his pet projects.

There have been other fixes. Before the 2014 Sochi winter games in homophobic Russia he helped introduce protections for gay athletes.

When cyclist Lance Armstrong was exposed as a drug cheat, Coates required all Australian Olympic athletes to sign anti-doping promises.

The royal commission into child abuse led Coates to force sporting bodies to introduce policies to protect children.

Bidding to host

The way host cities are chosen might represent his greatest achievement.

Previous bidding contests were expensive for cities, led to competition to create grandiose and expensive stadiums and usually ended in disappointment.

Sometimes, the two-year process of wooing Olympic delegates descended into what looked like vote buying.

With the stench of corruption emerging from some international sporting organisations, including the world soccer body, FIFA, and Olympic Games developing reputations as money sinks, the IOC decided on a new approach.

Losing cities are winnowed out early, saving them money and loss of face. The frontrunner doesn’t have to commit everything until they know they can win.

Connections

As an IOC vice president, overseer of the Tokyo games, and close ally of IOC president Thomas Bach, Coates was able to use his connections, and understanding of the process, in the interests of his country.

Part of Brisbane’s compelling pitch is not only that it already has almost all the physical facilities needed, but that it can demonstrate support across the spectrum of politics, society and business.

Coates has stitched together another coalition.

Four years ago Coates was challenged by stockbroker and former Hockeyroo Danni Roche, who wanted his job at the Australian Olympic Committee.

Coates won easily, but was subjected to uncomfortable scrutiny about why any leader should run an organisation for almost three decades.

One of those who Coates believed opposed him was John Wylie, the chairman of the Australian Sports Commission.

When Wylie offered to shake his hand at a sporting event, the normally placid Coates demonstrated his approach to critics.

“I don’t shake hands with liars,” he said. “I don’t shake hands with c----.

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Inside the $375m track back to Olympic glory for ageing AIS

Credit: Financial Review

By Michael Bleby Senior reporter

Oct 23, 2020 – 7.15pm

 

Vanessa Low loves her Canberra athletics base. She is well qualified to judge – the Paralympic gold medallist trained in Germany and the US before settling in at the Australia Institute of Sport's legendary campus.

"I would say this is probably the best facility I have used," says German-born Low, who will next year represent Australia in long jump at the rescheduled Tokyo Paralympic Games.

"People have put a lot of thought into creating a wholesome approach. It's not just one good coach, one good track. It's all the little things that tie this big important stuff together in one good package." 

The 30-year-old Low - who had both legs amputated after a train accident when she was 15 - is the only above-knee amputee, single or double, to have jumped over 5 metres, won gold for her home country of Germany at Rio in 2016 for jumping 4.93 metres.

But the Bruce campus that led the world in high-performance sport when it opened in 1981 needs a big overhaul. Sport, and the skills needed to secure the best performances, has evolved. And while there is endless debate about sports funding, there is one thing everyone agrees on: the AIS needs a big upgrade.

"Other countries have got better facilities than we do today, is the blunt truth," says outgoing Australian Sports Commission chairman John Wylie.

"The UK, Japan, France have got better national high-performance facilities than Australia does today."

Facilities are not the only thing that matters – a strong grass-roots culture of sport and a pipeline for emerging talent are also crucial – but Australia's failure to keep up with rival high-performance facilities mirrors its worsening Olympic performance.

Since peaking in the medal count at Sydney in 2000 with 58 medals, 16 of them gold, Australia has slipped. The second-best result came four years later in Athens, with 49 medals – 17 of them gold. At Beijing in 2008, the team brought home 46 medals but that slipped to 35 in London 2012. At Rio in 2016, the total was just 29.

"I think we got too complacent," says Alex Baumann, Swimming Australia's high-performance chief strategist.

"How do we continue to develop? Where is the next number of quality coaches coming through the system? Secondly, it's having the resources to be able to do it. We've slipped off that as well."

But it is not just about medals. Success inspires children to take up sport. Sport is also unifying.

"It's the little glue that keeps us together," Low says. "It's something we all have in common."

Now there is a plan. An AIS proposal, two years in the making, argues the federal government should sell off half of the 66-hectare campus to fund a $375 million overhaul. The expected $200 million from land sales and saving the annual $13 million in maintenance costs would make the project self-funding in the long term.

But the new AIS will be different. For a start, it won't be the primary training location for as many sports as it once was.

Seven sports are still primarily based at the Canberra campus such as basketball – the facility is recognised by the NBA as one of only two centres of excellence outside the US – but many run their own elite programs in a range of locations.

Swimming Australia, for example, operates 10 Olympic swimming programs across Brisbane, Gold Coast, Adelaide, Sunshine Coast, Perth and Sydney, and has high-performance programs based at Bond University and TSS Aquatic, a swimming club on the Gold Coast.

The AIS will focus on three areas: paralympic development and training; developing a global centre of excellence for female coaches – at Rio in 2016 just 8 per cent of Australian coaches were women; and being a leading-edge sports technology hub that partners with universities and tech companies.

"We obviously are very keen to press on with this project," Wylie says. "It will deliver substantial benefits to Australian sports and athletes."

But it is unclear when it will happen. Government wheels often turn slowly, especially for a large capital project that needs cabinet sign-off. Any big project takes a long time and it will take years more for the benefits to show.

Sports Minister Richard Colbeck says the federal government will consider the project "in due course".

Time, however, is something the country can't afford. Low, who says it would take eight to 12 years for the benefits of a new facility to come through, says it is crucial to start.

"If we don’t lock the changes down and implement it now, we will be left behind in future games," she says.

But Wylie, whose eight-year tenure as ASC chairman ends in November, suddenly raises an idea that would mean further delay. A redeveloped AIS could be built in south-east Queensland, the region bidding to host the 2032 summer Olympic and Paralympic Games, he says.

We think that should be looked at," Wylie says. "We think there is a case now to wait, to see whether Brisbane is successful, Australia is successful, in a bid for the Games in 2032."

The future of the AIS will also be influenced by a separate assessment of sport infrastructure being prepared by the Australian Olympic Committee, Paralympics Australia and Commonwealth Games Australia. That is due to be handed to the government in April, ahead of the 2021 federal budget.

But Low opposes moving the AIS from Canberra. Many coaches and athletes have relocated their families to Canberra to work there.

Having taken out Australian citizenship in 2017 - she is married to paralympic gold-medallist sprinter Scott Reardon - Low won gold at the World Para Athletics Championships in Dubai last year.

Many would be unable to move again and this, in turn, would reduce the very benefits the project wants to achieve.

"You can't expect all the people to relocate their entire life and families at that moment in time," she says. "It will probably mean we will behind for a fair few years."

 

 

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OLYMPICS AN OPPORTUNITY TO CATALYSE TWO DECADES OF INVESTMENT IN SEQ

Credit: Property Council of Australia

25 FEB 2021

The Property Council of Australia welcomes the International Olympic Committee’s announcement that Brisbane is the preferred host of the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Summer Games.  

The Executive Director of the Property Council in Queensland, Chris Mountford said hosting the Olympics provides a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to turbocharge public and private investment in the infrastructure needed for our growing region.

“Hosting the Olympics provides the impetus and global platform for South East Queensland to go to the next level in terms of major infrastructure and public realm investments,” Mr Mountford said. 

“Done right, the Olympics will be a catalyst for improving the region’s connectivity, livability and prosperity over the next two decades. 

“A critical next step in leveraging this opportunity is pushing ahead with the SEQ City Deal. Finalising the City Deal will strengthen our position to host the Games and expedite our post-COVID-19 economic recovery. 

“Along with facilitating investment in catalytic infrastructure, hosting the Olympics will showcase our region to the world, and inspire confidence in the private sector to invest alongside government.

“Queensland is already well-placed to capitalize on its success in its handling of the pandemic, and the Olympic spotlight will only accelerate the growth trajectory of the region. 

“With 11 years to go, it is imperative we use this opportunity to align the policy settings with our ambitions of being an Olympic region. We need to ensure our planning, tax and infrastructure settings are geared to the accelerated growth the Olympics will bring, and are investment friendly to leverage the benefit of the global profile. 

“Pursuing an SEQ Olympics has always been a bold proposition. Now it must be matched by some bold policy making to ensure we get bang for buck.   

“Congratulations must go to the representatives from all three levels of government who have methodically pursued this opportunity over the past 6 years to get it to this point,” Mr Mountford said.

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No cost blowout on Queensland 2032 Olympics, Coates vows

Credit: Financial Review

By Michael Bleby Senior reporter

Sep 15, 2020 – 5.23pm

 

John Coates declared south-east Queensland's bid to host the 2032 Summer Games will be cost-neutral and dismissed a damning report that found the average cost blowout for Olympic host cities since 1960 has been nearly triple the official budget.

The Australian Olympic Committee president, who wants Australia to host the Games again as the final legacy of his decades-long Olympic career, said Queensland's $4.5 billion bid would be self-sustaining. He slammed the UK report that put the average bill of five recent Olympic tournaments at $US12 billion ($16.4 billion).

"I’ve taken the view that I’ve got more productive things to do with my time than to analyse that report and respond to it," Mr Coates told The Australian Financial Review after a commemorative relighting of the Sydney Olympic cauldron to mark the 20th anniversary of the 2000 Games he oversaw.

While the costs of some recent games have blown out, such as the $US15 billion price of London 2012 and $US21.9 billion figure for Sochi 2014, the median cost of the Summer Games between 1960 and 2016 was $5.6 billion – $US547,000 per athlete – and the median cost of the Winter Games was $US2 billion, a median $US990,000 per athlete, according to the report from Oxford University's Saïd Business School.

Host locations were on the hook for all the costs while the International Olympic Committee faced no such curb, and this was one reason every Games since 1960 had ended up 172 per cent on average over budget excluding inflation, says the report Why the Olympics Blow Up, by Bent Flyvbjerg, Alexander Budzier and Daniel Lunn .

"The IOC has no incentive to curb cost overruns, but quite the opposite, as the IOC focuses on revenues, from which their profits derive, and some costs drive revenues and thus IOC profits," it says.

"The host, on the other hand, has no choice but to spend more, whenever needed, whether they like it or not. This is the blank cheque syndrome."

Possible steps to reduce the risk of cost blowouts included shortening the average seven-year delivery phase of the games – to make preparations faster and more standardised and likely to include more use of existing facilities – and requiring the IOC to have skin in the game by committing to pay a minimum 10 per cent of any cost overrun from its own pocket.

Mr Coates, also an IOC vice-president and the author of a set of reforms aimed to reduce the financial burden of hosting games, said that assessment was "simply not the case". The cash the IOC contributed to organisers to defray costs, such as the $2.5 billion it would put towards a Queensland Games would help them break even, he said.

"The minimum figure we’ve been told the IOC will provide for a Brisbane Games – and this is the basis upon which the Queensland government did their value propositions – is $2.5 billion," he said. "So the IOC puts that in."

On top of that, local organisers of an Australian bid could expect to receive about $1 billion each from ticketing and national sponsorship revenue – less a cut of about 8 per cent paid to the IOC – as well as hospitality revenue and TV broadcast revenue from the Paralympics, he said.

"That’s how on the budgeting of $4.5 billion, the early budgeting for Brisbane – before we bring in the simplification measures and other efficiencies that we’re dealing with – that’s what gets you to a break-even position," Mr Coates said. 

Mr Coates said the report inflated costs by confusing capital expenditure with operating expenditure. The report, however, says its calculation of costs excludes spending on road, rail, airports, hotels, and other infrastructure.

The high costs of hosting Olympic Games was particularly detrimental as countries often bid to host them when their economies were buoyant but by the time the tournament came around the cycle and turned and the imposts were extra hard on economies that had weakened, as happened with Athens 2004 and Rio 2016, the report says.

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Brisbane's bid for the 1992 Olympic Games

Credit: State Library of Queensland

How would the 1992 Olympic Games have looked if Brisbane had been the successful host candidate?

Brisbane's Lord Mayor, Alderman Sallyanne Atkinson, accepting $200,000 in gold coins towards Brisbane's 1992 Olympic Games bid. The contribution was made by a Brisbane-based investment company (1986). Negative number 191986, John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. 

There are several items in the State Library of Queensland's collection which provide possible answers to this question.  Brisbane's preparations for its bid for the 1992 Olympic Games began with the successful hosting of the 1982 Commonwealth Games. On 15 October 1982 Brisbane Lord Mayor Roy Harvey announced that he would initiate an investigation into the possibility of Brisbane hosting the Olympic Games. This investigation led to the development of the "Committee to Organise the Brisbane Olympics" which drove the project forward.

Brisbane's rivals for the 1992 Games were Belgrade, New Delhi, Birmingham, Amsterdam, Paris and Barcelona. Brisbane considered it had an advantage over its rivals as it believed a massive construction program to prepare for the Games was unnecessary. It was thought that many of the facilities used during the 1982 Commonwealth Games could be adapted.

Brisbane boasted that its main advantages were:

  • "a complex plan in which all sports venues would be within 20kms of the Village, and less than 30 minutes travelling time"
  • "one central Village for all Olympians, officials and participants in demonstration sports"
  • "security and peace"
  • "a new Brisbane International Airport to cope with the 15,000 athletes and officials, 10,000 media representatives and 200,000 Games visitors"
  • "the first fully-integrated media and broadcast communication "city" in Olympic history with sophisticated media and communication facilities"

The opening and closing ceremony for the 1992 Olympic Games would be held at the QEII stadium at Nathan. It was proposed that seating capacity at the stadium be increased from 62,000 to 95,000.
Apart from the ceremonies the Queensland Elizabeth II Zone would host the athletics competitions.

QEII Stadium during the 1982 Commonwealth Games. The stadium was to undergo renovations if Brisbane hosted the 1992 Olympics. Negative number 191177, John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland.

The Boondall Zone was based around the existing Brisbane Entertainment Centre. This zone would host basketball, diving, hockey, handball, volleyball, gymnastics, yachting and synchronised swimming. A new Hockey Centre and Aquatic Centre were proposed for this site. The Boondall Zone also featured the Olympic Village which would have housed the 15,000 Olympic competitors and officials. The Village was to be constructed in the Boondall Wetlands.  It was planned that the Village would be converted into a residential area at the end of the Games with the proposed cinema, restaurant, disco, tavern, games rooms and dining areas to be converted into a shopping mall. A marina with the capacity to hold up to 1,800 boats was also scheduled for construction at Boondall.

The Chandler Zone would feature archery, Judo, swimming, fencing, wrestling, shooting, equestrian, cycling, modern pentathlon, weightlifting and badminton. The Sleeman Sports Complex already existed on the site, which included an aquatic centre and a cycling velodrome.  The archery competition was to be held at the nearby Murrarie Recreation Ground and shooting at the Belmont Rifle Range.

The Central City Zone would host football, boxing, tennis and water polo. It was proposed that boxing would be held at Festival Hall and water polo at the Fortitude Valley Pool. The majority of the football matches would be played at Lang Park (now Suncorp Stadium) with support grounds at Ballymore, Perry Park and Spencer Park. Tennis was scheduled to be played at Milton's (now defunct) Tennis Centre, which would have undergone a major reconstruction to provide one main stadium court, three secondary courts and twenty practice courts.

Two events, rowing and canoeing, would be held on Lake Kurwongbah. A temporary grandstand was to be erected with casual seating for up to 10,000 spectators.

One of the major selling points of Brisbane's 1992 Olympics bid was the Media Village and Media Centre, described as "the first fully-integrated media and broadcast communication "city" in Olympic history" and boasting the latest techniques such as stereo sound, super slow motion, isolated camera slow motion and divide control of multi-action events. The Media Centre and Village was to be positioned at South Bank after the Expo 88 site had been demolished.

Panoramic views of the World Expo site, 1986; This site was to be used as the Media Village for the 1992 Brisbane Olympics. Image number 7206-0001-0001, John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. 

In total the Games was expected to cost $821 million with an expected revenue of $908 million

On 17 October 1986 Brisbane's dreams were dashed when Barcelona was announced as the host of the 1992 Olympic Games. Out of the 6 competiting cities Brisbane had disappointly come third. The years of planning and the positive thinking all came to nought.

"We want to show the world what Brisbane, Queensland and Australia has to offer, both on and off the sports field. We want to show you that Brisbane is ready NOW for 1992!" - Sallyanne Atkinson, Lord Mayor of Brisbane.

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Brilliant Brisbane bids for 1992 Games

Credit: Noosa Today

24/11/2020

 

Olympics_222235_01.jpg When the Australian Olympic Committee announced Melbourne had won the right to bid for the 1996 Olympics over Brisbane and Sydney, Sallyanne Atkinson said quietly to her ‘bidding team’ group’ (of which Ian Jobling was a member): “I accept the umpire’s decision, I just think the umpire was wrong”.
Olympics_222235_05.jpgOlympics_222235_03.jpgOlympics_222235_04.jpgOlympics_222235_02.jpg

By Ian Jobling

Pride and euphoria abounded in Brisbane in October 1982. Queenslanders and Australians generally felt ‘they’ had done such a brilliant job hosting the XII Commonwealth Games in 1982 that the Lord Mayor of Brisbane Roy Harvey immediately set his sights on the Olympics of 1992.

With his Council’s backing, Harvey formed a project team which outlined proposals for a new international airport, and an arterial road system to link existing and planned sporting venues and accommodation. That done, the Brisbane City Council (BCC) sent a letter to the IOC in January 1983 outlining their intention to bid for the 1992 Games.

The next month Brisbane officials travelled to Lausanne for discussions about the bid process, and in April IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch, visited Brisbane. 

Two years later in June 1985, following changes to the BCC, the newly elected Lord Mayor, Sallyanne Atkinson, attended the 90th Session of the IOC in Berlin in June 1985. 

Sallyanne Atkinson was the key proponent of this bid and the impact of her intellect, charm, and political sense on members of the IOC had a vital bearing in the subsequent bids of Melbourne 1996 and Sydney 2000.

The proposed timing of the Brisbane Games produced some interesting arguments. It was suggested that this ‘Olympics Down Under’ would be held between 25 July and 9 August when Brisbane enjoys ‘idyllic dry weather’. This would be beneficial to northern hemisphere athletes because they would compete ‘in-season’.

There was, in addition, the regular refrain that only one Olympic Games had been held in the southern hemisphere – ‘’surely to further the Olympic ideals in Oceania, and throughout the world, it is time to hold another”. 

The catch-cry, ‘Brisbane’s Ready’ featured prominently in a video-presentation. It was argued that most of the venues were already in place, and the plans for the remainder had been finalised when the bid was presented in Lausanne in October 1986. The Brisbane bid organisers were sufficiently confident in the progress of their preparations that they were even ready to take over in 1988 following rumours that the preparations for the Seoul Olympics were ‘tardy’ and the Games there might falter. 

Brisbane, like any other bid city, had its critics as well. There were many who were scathing of Brisbane’s presumption to bid. Murray Hedgcock wrote in the Weekend Australian in 1984: “It’s difficult to know whether to applaud, laugh, or cry about

Brisbane’s belated campaign to grab the 1992 Summer Olympics … The last thing they [the European countries] want … is to face a 1992 trek to the other side of the world and also be asked to compete out of season because Australia’s summer is Europe’s winter.” 

Hedgcock concluded this article with an unkind yet prophetic remark: “He (IOC President, Samaranch) can hardly be blamed for seeking to round off his term of office by persuading his fellows that Spain is ready’’. Barcelona, in Catalonia, Spain, was awarded the 1992 Olympic Games, but Samaranch continued as IOC President.

Brisbane came third. Immediately after the announcement in Lausanne, representatives of the Australian media asked Sallyanne whether Brisbane would bid again for 1996. Aware of the imminence of council elections, she responded that she would have to ask the people of Brisbane. 

In my opinion, it was the ‘delay’ by Brisbane which provided the opportunity for Sydney and Melbourne to make a running as the Australian city to bid for the 1996 Games. 

John Coates, Executive Director he executive director of the Brisbane Olympic Project Office for the 1992 bid, was interviewed soon after his return to Australia. He said he had little doubt that the AOF again would endorse Brisbane as Australia’s 1996 candidate if it wanted to resubmit. “Climatically, Brisbane is by far our best candidate. For a Sydney Games, you would be looking at October, and November for Melbourne, which is far too late for the northern hemisphere countries.” 

Four Australian cities – Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney – expressed interest in hosting the 1996 Olympics and throughout 1988 an ‘internal’ selection process took place. 

Immediately following the decision in Canberra that Melbourne should be the Australian city to bid for the 1996 Olympics, Sallyanne Atkinson said quietly to her ‘bidding team’ group’ (of which I was a member): “I accept the umpire’s decision, I just think the umpire was wrong”. The next day, ‘Leahy’, cartoonist for the Courier Mail in Brisbane, depicted a frustrated Torch-bearer attempting to kindle the Olympic Flame – in pouring rain. 

‘Zanetti’, Sydney’s Daily Telegraph cartoonist, expressed a similar disappointment that Melbourne was chosen by the AOC with the caption, “We thought we were bidding for the Winter Olympics’. 

Similar sentiments abounded throughout Australia over the next few years, but especially in Victoria when the IOC in September 1990 announced that Atlanta would host the 1996 Olympics. One of the slogans used by the Melbourne Olympic Committee was that it was ‘Time for Another Continent’. Not only had the northern hemisphere hosted all Summer Olympics apart from 1956, North America had hosted five.

Many IOC members and representatives from international sports federations who visited Melbourne were encouraging in their comments; this was evident in their formal reports, in the media, and in more informal comments to particular individuals, including me. 

David Miller, a respected journalist who specialises in writing about the Olympic Movement, supported Melbourne’s case for hosting the Olympics in a London Times article which was reproduced in November 1989 in the Weekend Australian under the headline, ‘Clean, free, safe … and morally justified’:

“Members of the IOC arriving in Melbourne to inspect Australia’s bid for the 1996 Games can stand at the top of the Rialto Tower and see, with a single sweep of the eye, the venues for every sport, bar two. Those two, rowing and canoeing, will be 32 km distant … everything else, except equestrianism and archery at the glorious parkland of

Werribee – just beyond the city – is contained inside a 10 km radius.” 57

Miller was also impressed with specific venues and the Olympic Museum situated at the MCG, which was ‘without equivalent’. He also quoted opinion polls which indicated public support running at 85 per cent. 

Although the sentimental favourite was Athens – to celebrate the centenary of the inaugural modern Olympic Games of 1896 – Melbourne was a most worthy contender. Alas, in Tokyo in September 1990, the hopes of Melbourne’s Olympic Flame being kindled in 1996 were doused again when yet another North American city, Atlanta, was elected – assisted greatly by the promise of extensive funding from its ‘home-based’ Coca-Cola company. 

However, the formal bids by the AOC for the 1992 Brisbane and 1996 Melbourne Olympic Games set the scene for the successful Sydney 2000 bid, which shall be outlined next week.

[Ian Jobling is Honorary Director of the Centre of Olympic Studies at the University of Queensland]

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Does Australia’s ‘preferred’ status for 2032 Olympics affect Utah’s hopes for another Games?

Credit: Deseret News

By Lisa Riley Roche@lisarileyroche 

Feb 27, 2021, 9:00pm MST

 

SALT LAKE CITY — International Olympic Committee leaders named Brisbane, Australia, its preferred bid for the 2032 Summer Games this week, but there was no talk about Salt Lake City or other places pursuing the Winter Games in 2030.

“I would like to emphasize that this recommendation and this decision is not a decision against anybody,” IOC President Thomas Bach said during a virtual news conference held after Wednesday’s monthly executive committee meeting. “This is just a decision in favor of one interested party at this moment in time.”

Bach said there was no report at the meeting on future Winter Olympics hosts.

But just because IOC leaders are already looking ahead to the 2032 Olympics doesn’t mean they’re behind on making decisions about upcoming Winter Games. Before the new, less-formal selection process was put in place recently, host cities were named seven years in advance.

What does this mean for Utah?

Fraser Bullock, the chief operating officer of the 2002 Winter Games in Salt Lake City and the president and CEO of Utah’s effort to land another Olympics, also helped put together the IOC’s new bid process. He said “it’s understandable” the IOC would be looking at the next Summer Games to be awarded at this point.

“I believe the reason is that Brisbane has moved very quickly, far in advance of the typical time frame. They have made great progress and they are moving to the next logical step,” Bullock said. “The same will eventually happen for winter bids.”

For now, Bullock said, Utah bidders “continue to actively work” with the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee to determine whether to pursue the 2030 or the 2034 Winter Games, still nine to 13 years away. The Salt Lake City-Utah Committee for the Games, which hasn’t met publicly since November, is working on budgets and other plans.

“We are making good progress in the detailed work toward a future bid,” Bullock said.

Salt Lake City was chosen more than two years ago by the U.S. committee over Denver to bid on behalf of the nation for an unspecified Winter Games. Last fall, then-Gov. Gary Herbert, Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall and bid committee leaders officially notified Bach in a letter that they hope to welcome the world again.

Unlike Brisbane, which had committed to compete for 2032, Salt Lake City and the other cities that have expressed interest in hosting a Winter Games are not yet ready to go that far.

All of those potential Winter Games host cities have previously hosted an Olympics: Salt Lake City, the 2002 Winter Games; Sapporo, Japan, the 1972 Winter Games; Vancouver, British Columbia, the 2010 Winter Games; and Barcelona, Spain, the 1992 Summer Games.

Salt Lake needs the nod from the USOPC about which Winter Games the United States wants, a choice complicated by Los Angeles hosting the 2028 Summer Games and not wanting competition for domestic sponsorships. 

For Sapporo, the issue is lagging support in Japan for the Olympics after the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo were delayed until this summer due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Other potential Winter Games hosts have yet to secure significant backing for bidding.

Impact of new process for awarding bids

Still, there’s no rush, said Ed Hula, founder and editor of Around the Rings, an Atlanta-based online Olympic news source with an international following. Hula said he expects the IOC will wait to see how this summer’s Olympics in Tokyo come off before focusing on the Winter Games.

“Sapporo is well-prepared and probably doesn’t need to do much to bring the Olympics back. And neither does Salt Lake City. So they can wait a couple more years at least before they make a decision. They have that luxury from the quality of the possible candidates,” he said.

Since there isn’t a timetable anymore for a city to indicate interest in hosting an Olympics, nor a set date for the IOC to choose a host, Hula said Olympic officials may want to give Vancouver and Barcelona time to build support for their bids to ensure there’s plenty of choices for future Winter Games. 

It wasn’t that long ago that the IOC ended up awarding Beijing the 2022 Winter Games over Almaty, Kazakhstan, after other contenders, including Stockholm and Oslo, dropped out. Recently, there have been calls to boycott Beijing, which also hosted the 2008 Summer Games, because of China’s human rights record.

“I think you’re still in a situation, particularly with winter bids, winter cities, of having not so many options,” Hula said. The IOC has set a precedent for awarding multiple Olympics at the same time, when Paris got the 2024, and Los Angeles the 2028, Summer Games.

Brisbane is the first city to advance under the IOC’s new bid process, established in 2019 to make it easier and cheaper for cities to go after a Games by limiting lobbying and dropping formalities in favor of ongoing discussions with a new future host commission. 

Cities in a number of countries had been looking at 2032, including Germany, Indonesia, China, Qatar and India, but the IOC Executive Committee voted to enter into what’s called a “targeted dialog” with Brisbane based on the Australian city’s extensive plans for an Olympics largely using existing venues.

That means if the commission is satisfied after further review, the full IOC will be asked to name Brisbane the 2032 host. Just when that might happen is yet to be decided, the commission chairwoman, Norwegian IOC member Kristin Kloster Aasen, said. 

Moving forward with Brisbane at this point is seen as helping bring stability to the Olympics, she said, “given the uncertainty the world is facing at this moment which is expected to continue” even after the COVID-19 pandemic ends. She said the new bid process allowed the IOC “to seize the opportunity.

 

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30 years since Jim Soorley began to modernise Brisbane

Former lord mayor Jim Soorley has “honestly and humbly” claimed the credit for transforming Brisbane into a modern city.

Credit: The Courier Mail

By Peter Gleeson

March 29, 2021 - 12:00AM

 

It’s 30 years next week since Jim Soorley upset Sallyanne Atkinson to be elected as Brisbane lord mayor.

According to Mr Soorley, his tenure was the most progressive period in the council’s history, with significant social and infrastructure reforms.

They included airconditioning of buses, disability access and electronic timetabling. 

Dredging was stopped at the river, the sewerage plants were upgraded to tertiary level and the CityCats were introduced.

From a cultural perspective, the Powerhouse and Brisbane Festival were set up, as was massive bushland acquisition programs.

Urban renewal of places such as New Farm and Teneriffe began – they are now the most sought after residential suburbs in the city – and South Bank was set up through a joint partnership with the State Government.

Outdoor dining. Energy around food and dining.

The Asia Pacific Cities conference was established, bolstering Brisbane’s links with our near neighbours.

Mr Soorley went on to do 12 years as lord mayor, before resigning and handing over to his deputy Tim Quinn, who was beaten by Campbell Newman in 2004.


He ruefully blames former premier Peter Beattie for not allowing tunnels with tolls during his reign.

“I planned (tunnel) the Clem7 and Beattie wouldn’t let me do it, so when Campbell was elected he said ‘way you go’,’’ Soorley said.

“I want to be very honest and humble here. 

“Brisbane was transformed under my leadership from a sleepy town to a bustling city, focused on the river.

“Walkways and cycleways up and down the river have turned the city into one of the most liveable in the world.”

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Internet domain names linked to proposed 2032 Brisbane Olympic Games already a hot commodity

Credit: Gold Coast Bulletin

By Kathleen Skene, Gold Coast Bulletin

INTERNET investors are looking to a quick buck from the southeast Queensland Olympics – before the event has even been confirmed. 

Brisbane was named by the International Olympic Committee in February as “preferred host” for the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Web domain names linked to the proposed Games have changed hands regularly for the past three years, with the South East Queensland Council of Mayors managing to buy up some of the big ones.

The council has owned BrisbaneOlympics.com.au for more than two years and added seq2032.com.au and seqolympics.com.au to its portfolio in August last year.

It also has queensland32.com.au and brisbane2032.com.au among its portfolio of 22 domain names.

However, it appears the council, of which Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate is a director, has a bit of haggling to do if it wants to nab some of the more recognisable web addresses with the coveted .au at the end.

Licences for Australian domain names are issued by .au Domain Administration (auDA) to applicants who meet eligibility and allocation requirements.

To be eligible, the domain name must by “closely and substantially connected to the registrant”. However, the rules are often loosely applied.

Gold Coast businessman Ian Creaser, founder of web design and marketing company SEO Web Logistics, registered Olympics2032.com.au and 2032Olympics.com.au in December last year.

Mr Creaser, who holds licences for around 200 domain names, said he was a long-term investor in names that could be on-sold once they were in demand.

“Many years ago, I registered GoldCoastCommonwealthGames.com.au and all the other combinations, but I got a call from England saying it’s illegal to use the word Commonwealth,” he said.

“It was always the intention to have someone come along and pay for them – I was hoping the government would say ‘we want that’. It’s sort of what I do.”

Brisbane2032.com.au was purchased by the council of mayors in June 2019, five months after it was licensed by formerly ASX-listed cloud service company Bulletproof Networks.

Former Bulletproof boss Anthony Woodward was listed as the contact in the registration, but this week said he had no knowledge of it, suggesting it may have been made on behalf of a former client.

BNE2032.com.au was registered in 2019 by James Haley through now-defunct company Haley Projects, but it has since changed hands.

Its current owner is Anthony Osbourne, through O Project Services, a company registered at Cleveland in May last year.

Another Olympics domain contender, Queensland2032.com.au, is registered by businesswoman Karen Gilfillan, through Flying Fox Studios – a Brisbane kids art school.

Chris Phillips, a jet ski dealer of Broadbeach, is named registrant of GoldCoast2032.com.au.

There were still a few juicy Olympics-flavoured URLs available to “eligible registrants” as of this week: Australia2032.com.au was unregistered, as was SouthEastQueensland2032.com.au, SEQOlympicgames.com.au, QueenslandGames.com.au, 2032OlympicGames.com.au and 2032Games.com.au.

Council of Mayors CEO Scott Smith said the group had secured numerous domains. “initiating the investigation into the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games back in 2015”.

“The SEQ Mayors have always believed South East Queensland would present a compelling proposition for the 2032 Games, so securing the relevant domains was really a reflection of the belief that we’re ready for this opportunity.

“While a 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games would deliver significant economic benefits to the southeast and Queensland, the International Olympic Committee recently endorsed Brisbane 2032 as the preferred host of the Games.”

A statement from auDA said it had not received any complaints about the Olympics-related domain names registered by other individuals.

“We have a clear complaint processes to enable review of eligibility and allocation criteria,” it said.

“Where complaints are made, we will take action in accordance with our complaints policy.

“Where relevant criteria has not been met, we have powers to suspend or cancel domain names.”

The scuffle may be on for .com.au names, but a bigger payday might be coming in securing the United States-based .org domain traditionally used by Olympic Games hosts.

Domain names in the US have no eligibility requirements, with names allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.

Organisations chasing a domain already held by someone else could pay millions of dollars for it.

Searches quickly reveal queensland2032.org, seq2032.org, brisbane2032.org and queensland2032.org are already taken.

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Brisbane, Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast to host 2032 Olympic Games events

As Queensland firms as the “preferred candidate” to host the 2032 Olympic Games, attention is shifting to exactly where the world-class games will be held.

Credit: Gold Coast Bulletin

By Dan Knowles, The Courier-Mail

 

Queensland’s front-runner status to host the 2032 Olympics could start a battle between southeast regions eager to host major Games events.

Three levels of government have united to form the state’s bid, but with Queensland moving into “preferred candidate” status - attention is shifting to where world-class games will be held.

Council of Mayors Southeast Queensland director and Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson acknowledged not all of the 11 southeast councils would receive hosting rights.

“The mayors to their credit, have been committed for the greater good around southeast Queensland,” he said.

“It is not possible for everybody to have events but there’s a whole range of training opportunities.

“The focus that will be on the area around the world will benefit all of the regions and the entire state.”

AOC President John Coates said the state had submitted a draft venue masterplan to the International Olympic Committee, but declared nothing was set in stone.

“There’s nothing definite on where the rowing is going to go,” he said.

He said track and field events had been earmarked for Carrara and declared the opening ceremony could be held at Suncorp Stadium.

“The IOC is not requiring us to go out and spend big money, they want us to use existing and temporary venues,” he said.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the state would begin assessing “in detail” what venues would host events.

“We’ve got to go down to the fine print and make sure we’ve got all the funding lined up between all levels of government,” she said.

Ms Palaszczuk flagged the possibility of the regions holding soccer matches to ensure “all of the state will share in an Olympic glory”.

“We want to make sure this is inclusive of Queensland and that we all have a part of history here,” she said.

OLYMPIC VENUES, ATHLETES VILLAGES REVEALED IN MASTERPLAN

The Brisbane River and the Gold Coast beach strip will play a massive part in the Brisbane 2032 Olympic Games according to the masterplan that helped convince the International Olympic Committee to talk exclusively to Brisbane.

According to the bid masterplan, there will be two athletes villages - one in Brisbane and one on the Gold Coast.

The venue masterplan for Brisbane's 2032 Olympic Games bid. The venue masterplan for Brisbane's 2032 Olympic Games bid.

The Gold Coast would use existing 2000 hotel beds but Brisbane would build a 14,000 athlete village as part of the massive redevelopment of Albion and the riverside.

Brisbane Live will be signed off sometime early this year, with the entertainment precinct featuring heavily in the program.

A number of venues and an athletes village will be located on the Gold Coast. A number of venues and an athletes village will be located on the Gold Coast.

But there are slimmed down options listed too, like using the Gabba for ceremonies and Carrara on the Gold Coast for athletics.

The Games will also use the region’s best assets to showcase Queensland to the world with high profile sports like three by three basketball being played on the South Bank piazza and athletics and cycling at Alexandra Headland on the Sunshine Coast and beach volleyball ball on the sand on the Gold Coast.

The Sunshine Coast will host events if the 2032 Olympic Games are held in southeast Queensland. The Sunshine Coast will host events if the 2032 Olympic Games are held in southeast Queensland.

The plan says given Brisbane the Games would open up tourism to the fast-growing middle classes of Singapore, Hong Kong and Shanghai, and get Queensland kids moving.

But it also shows up some potential gaps in Queensland’s sporting facilities, with Sydney listed as alternative venues for rowing and whitewater events.

 

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Buildcorp Walleroos get new northern home as Palaszczuk Government secures the future of Ballymore

Credit: Rugby Australia

 13 October 2020

201013-ballymoreartistrender.jpg?h=643&l Architect design images of the Ballymore redevelopment - please credit: Blight Rayner

The Buildcorp Wallaroos, Australia’s Women’s Rugby team, will call Queensland’s iconic Ballymore home following the Palaszczuk Government’s commitment to fund the proposed National Rugby Training Centre (NRTC).

The State’s $15 million commitment matches the existing commitment by the Federal Government towards the Queensland Rugby Union’s (QRU) new high-performance centre.

Rugby Australia has today confirmed the Buildcorp Wallaroos would move to Brisbane to join the St.George Queensland Reds in the NRTC once it is finished in 2022.

The stunning $30 million high-performance centre will replace the McLean Stand and become the centrepiece of a redevelopment of Ballymore as an elite sports precinct.

Rugby Australia chairman Hamish McLennan thanked the Palaszczuk Government for its commitment to rugby union.

“Rugby in Queensland is incredibly strong, with growth in all forms of the game,” he said.

“The NRTC is an exciting project, providing a world-class facility with warmer temperatures as the new home of the Buildcorp Wallaroos. 

“It is a major coup for Queensland, which is establishing itself as a national centre of excellence not just for Rugby, but for many other major sports including cricket and netball.

“Rugby Australia recognises the Government’s sports strategy, which is why we want to bring more high-quality events to the State.

“We have another British and Irish Lions tour in 2025, which has the potential to bring more than $40 million into the State from touring fans. Having a world-class training facility can only help Queensland secure these events.”

The NRTC will see Rugby Australia move the headquarters of its women’s XVs program to Queensland, helping to inspire a new generation of female sporting talent. The NRTC will also house the Queensland Reds and the QRU’s academy program as well as other programs including referees, club rugby administration and representative programs.

The redevelopment includes an integrated 3000-seat stand replacing the McLean Stand’s capacity. 

QRU Chief Executive Officer David Hanham said: “This is the culmination of many years of work by the QRU to deliver a world-leading high-performance centre that meets the needs of our rugby community. 

“Moving our national women’s XVs program to Ballymore will allow female participation to continue to thrive – Queensland now has more than 16,000 women and girls playing the game in Queensland and that’s expected to double in coming years.

“As Queensland prepares major sporting events such as Rugby World Cup bid 2027 and the Olympic bid for 2032, Ballymore will become critical sporting infrastructure to support these events. This will also include the aspiration to create new links across Enoggera Creek with the Newmarket sporting fields that would deliver a sporting complex of more than 100 hectares, less than 5km from the CBD.”

The National Rugby Training Centre

The stunning NRTC has been designed by Michael Rayner of Blight Rayner Architects, who are also responsible for the New Performing Arts Complex (NPAC) at Southbank.

It will feature an integrated stand, replacing the existing McLean Stand which was first built in the 1968 and extended in the 1970s.

Spread over almost 4000 square metres, it will feature changerooms for up to 100 men and women and house cutting edge sports science and recovery facilities.

Construction is due to begin in April 2021.

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Hockey Australia says ‘bring it on’ for a home 2032 Olympics

Credit: Hockey Australia

SAT 27 FEB 2021

 

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Hockey Australia lauds the International Olympic Committee (IOC) decision to give Brisbane ‘preferred host’ status for the 2032 Olympic Games.

The IOC announced it would enter into ‘Targeted Dialogue’ for Brisbane and South East Queensland to host the world’s biggest sporting event.

“Hosting an Olympic Games in Australia again would be amazing for Australian hockey and Australian sport more broadly,” said Hockey Australia CEO Matt Favier.

“The Sydney 2000 Olympics were the pinnacle of a transformative period in Australian sport. The lead up to those Games was an exhilarating time for athletes and the Australian public, so should Brisbane and South East Queensland be awarded hosting rights when the final decision is announced, there is no doubt it would provide a much needed boost to the Australian sporting sector.”

“Australian Olympic Committee President John Coates, CEO Matt Carroll, the respective levels of government and the entire bid team are to be commended for their incredible work in positioning this bid so strongly.”

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Put it this way, the 2032 Olympic Games is now ours to lose

Credit: In Queensland

By Sean Parnell

February 25, 2021

The IOC has just asked Australia to form a winning relay team with three levels of government and the spendthrift voter, writes Sean Parnell.

As much as south-east Queensland’s Olympic bid is a shot at sustainability, after past hosts paid the price, the region just doesn’t have the transport infrastructure to support it. Not yet, anyway.

That has always been the key to this bid, that the Olympics could be delivered without great expense provided governments chipped in to upgrade roads, public transport and facilities. The infrastructure is needed anyway, so shouldn’t count towards the cost of the games, and becomes the legacy of the games – or so the argument goes.

But even before COVID-19 brought a pandemic and recession, the three levels of government – federal, state and local – were loath to spend money. A much-hyped SEQ City Deal, meant to be the linchpin for the bid, was put off as the Morrison and Palaszczuk governments watched their budgets go into the red and deeper into debt.

The proponents of the bid have talked up the prospect of faster train services to the Gold and Sunshine coasts, and even Toowoomba, to better connect the region and the thousands of sporting types and tourists who will want to come here in 2032. The International Olympic Committee has heard the sales pitch without seeing a signed contract.

Even this morning, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk seemed to play down the prospect of faster train services. Perhaps she is managing expectations.

The powers that be in Canberra like to choose which projects to support – the Morrison government has funded a study into Brisbane’s North-West Transport Corridor even though the federal Liberals for years refused to contribute to Cross River Rail.

For their part, Palaszczuk, Brisbane Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner, and even Australian Olympic boss John Coates have sought to promote their teamwork to date, and the prospect of pulling off a great win. To get this far is commendable.

Coates revealed that Palaszczuk last month talked up Queensland’s resilience, and strong record on COVID-19, to Olympic officials. The required infrastructure upgrades are now being portrayed as economic stimulus, to boost the region in the years to come. Is this the time to shine?

In the coming months, even if the IOC is satisfied by the proposed hosting arrangements, any suggestion that south-east Queensland is unprepared could still see other world cities come into contention. That’s the nature of the game.

The race isn’t over yet but south-east Queensland is in a strong position.

 

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When Australia hosts the Olympics in 2032, there’ll be a gold rush for artists too

CredIt: The Industry Observer

By Lars Brandle

Mar 02, 2021

When Sydney won the rights to host the 2000 Olympic Games, the announcement itself became an unlikely club hit.

Juan Antonio Samaranch, the late IOC president, made the big call back in 1993, and his words were immortalised in song, Southend’s “The Winner is…”

Samaranch started a party that lasted seven years. If you call the harbour city home, you could make an argument that the party never stopped.

Last week, Australia won again. But this time there won’t be a catchy pop song framed by a vocal sample with a distinctive European accent.

In a statement that couldn’t have been more muted if it were written by a mortician, the IOC announced Brisbane was the “preferred candidate city” to host the 2032 Summer Olympics.

The fun doesn’t stop there. In a turn of phrase that would make a writer weep, the Committee announced it would enter into “targeted dialogue” with Queensland and its capital to host the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

There were no champagne corks flying, no sweaty hugs or air punches. Now is not the time for all that. A cloud of mystery hangs over the Tokyo Games, which was pushed back a year into 2021 and has become a money pit for the host country.

The Olympics can do that. When the Games roll around every four years, the world gets its warpaint on. The host country, for whatever reason, typically enjoys a goldrush. (Australia won 13 in Melbourne, then a national record. In Sydney, the figure was 16, a new record.)

For 16 days, the Olympic Games controls the conversation. The Olympics is a pop-up planet of sport and entertainment.

The financial risks are ridiculous, the rewards perhaps equally so.

Following a closed-doors, cut-price bidding process, Brisbane emerged as “preferred candidate” for several reasons.

Australia’s third city has a proven track record for organising international events, with the Commonwealth Games (two, including the Gold Coast), an Expo and the Goodwill Games in its good books.

The climate in July and August will be beautiful one day, pretty bloody good the next.

And critically, the Sunshine State already has up to 90% of the essential pieces of infrastructure in place.

Hosting an Olympics can bankrupt a city, and leave oversized eyesores for generations to rue. Brisbane and the Gold Coast have no shortage of worldclass venues, from Suncorp Stadium and the Gabba, Metricon Stadium, the QSAC stadium, Brisbane Entertainment Centre and more.

So what does track and field have to do with Australian artists? Potentially, a lot.

Australia’s music community will be invited to shine at the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, and at festivals and concerts staged within the two-week-long Olympics party. Sydney 2020 shared a piece of the spotlight with the likes of Christine Anu, Kylie Minogue, Human Nature, Pee Wee Ferris and, yes, Nikki Webster.

In 11 years from now, a new generation of homegrown artists will get their chance for Olympics glory, and a decent fee for their efforts. When South Korea hosted the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, organisers thrust K-pop into the spotlight. XO and CL tore it up at the closing ceremony and made new fans everywhere.

It’s not hard to imagine Thelma Plum ruling at the 2032 Opening Ceremony, Violent Soho bringing the house down at the finale.

Also, infrastructure. A proposed inner-city venue, Brisbane Live, the brainchild of ASM Global chief Harvey Lister, was shelved last year, its $2 billion pricetag deemed greater than its benefits to the city. The Olympics could breathe new life into that project, and others.

These are strange times, and anything can flip in a decade. What we do know is that Queensland can deliver a cheap-and-cheerful Olympic Games, and Australia’s music community can go for gold, too.

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2 hours ago, AustralianFan said:

Internet domain names linked to proposed 2032 Brisbane Olympic Games already a hot commodity

 

 

in my day job i'm a lawyer and in the past ive dealt with domain name disputes. i can tell you know auDA will roll over and turn over any .com.au domains with a quick lawyers letter, especilly when someone has 200 domains. one company i acted for had the aussie distribution rights for a productm and someone registed <producttrademark>.com.au with a competing product on it - AuDA assigned that to us within 10 days

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OK, what 90% ratings for the pro- choices eleven years away?  What if support dwindles steadily each year -- for whatever reason?  What if it goes down to 25% or 30% support by 2032?  Will they still go on?  People and support are very fickle.  What is the Plan B then?? I would think the IOC would learn something from its Tokyo 2020 experiment.  

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Brisbane/SEQ 2032 have Carrara Stadium, Gold Coast listed as a possible Athletics Venue if a new Stadium is not built.

This story on Carrara’s Transformation to an Athletics Venue at 2018 Commonwealth Games:

METRICON STADIUM TRANSFORMS AHEAD OF 2018 COMMONWEALTH GAMES OPENING CEREMONY

Credit: Australasian Leisure Management

MARCH 23, 2018

Metricon Stadium transforms ahead of 2018 Commonwealth Games opening ceremony
MARCH 23, 2018

With the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games opening ceremony less than two weeks away, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has today been briefed on the transformation of Metricon Stadium into the Games’ major sporting arena into a world-class live performance space.

In advance of the Games opening ceremony on4th April, Premier Palaszczuk explained “in just 12 short days the eyes of the Commonwealth and the world will be on the Gold Coast as the city welcomes athletes, officials and spectators to Queensland for 12 amazing days of sports, arts and culture.

“This opening ceremony will connect the Gold Coast and Queensland with the watching world, showcasing the Gold Coast and Queensland’s creativity and diversity, whilst hosting the parading 71 nations and territories competing in the games with a party unlike anything Queensland has ever seen.

“The true heart of our ceremony is the incredible wealth of local talent, literally thousands of performers, choreographers, directors and creative staff drawn from across South East Queensland to create and perform on this one special night.”

Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Corporation (GOLDOC) Chief Executive Mark Peters added “from the moment the Gold Coast won the bid to host the games we have been focused on delivering great games with great people and that is certainly the case with the plans we have developed for the opening ceremony.

“The ceremonies team have travelled the state, engaged extensively with the local community and are focused on sharing our unique stories in a way that I know will surprise and delight the watching world.”

The opening ceremony will include the Commonwealth Parade of Nations, the Competitors’ Oath and the finale to the Queen’s Baton Relay, which started its international journey over a year ago at Buckingham Palace.

Metricon Stadium, being referred to as Carrara Stadium during the Games due to its ‘clean stadium’ requirements, is part of the $105 million purpose-built Gold Coast Sports and Leisure Centre and following the opening ceremony, the precinct will be a lively hub for the Commonwealth Games, hosting the athletics, badminton, wrestling and weightlifting competitions.

15,000 Commonwealth Games volunteers will be among the first people invited to watch the dress rehearsals for the opening ceremony, with operational elements of the show to be tested on 31 March and 2 April.

By the night of the Opening Ceremony on 4th April the Ceremonies team will have:

• Constructed a 3,300 metre² performance stage
• Installed 3,200 metre² staging to form the track for the Parade of Nations
• Installed over 8,000 metre² of ground cloth and 6,000 metre² of temporary roadways
• Installed 600 metre of trussing carrying 46 tons of audio and lighting equipment
• Installed and commissioned 22 high powered projectors
• Commissioned over 700 two way radios for show control and over 7,000 in-ear FM receivers for use by the cast
• Distributed over 60,000 meals for cast and volunteers
• Coordinated over 300 bus movements for cast to attend rehearsals
• Managed over 70,000 workforce and volunteer performer shifts at multiple locations across the Gold Coast and Queensland
• Over 400 truckloads of equipment for use in the Ceremonies

The Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games are to be held from 4th to 15th April, with the opening ceremony broadcast Australia-wide on the Seven Network on 4th April. 

Image: Metricon (Carrara) Stadium, courtesy of Mapei Australia.

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Legacy Policy Paper > hence ‘2033’ in the title.

See below:

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 

The Brisbane 2033: Our Olympic and Paralympic Legacy Taskforce Policy Paper launched

Credit:  Committee for Brisbane

 

March 20, 2021

On Friday 19 March John Coates AC, President of the Australian Olympic Committee launched the Taskforce’s first legacy paper.

For the past year, the Committee’s Brisbane 2033: Olympics and Paralympics Taskforce has been developing a suite of proposed legacies for south east Queensland that speak to long-term and permanent benefits to the community from hosting the Games.

Download the full Legacy Policy Paper here:

Brisbane 2033 - Our Olympics and Paralympic Legacies_Paper 01-2021

 

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Olympics, Billion-Dollar Projects Brighten Brisbane Outlook

Credit:  Qld Property Investor

 

Hosting the 2032 Olympic Games, along with a swathe of major projects and infrastructure, could play a critical role in Brisbane’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

With the largest local authority in the southern hemisphere, Brisbane is well-positioned post-pandemic with $20 billion worth of major development on the way and $49.5 billion committed to transport infrastructure.

Major development projects include the $5.4 billion Cross River Rail, $3 billion Queen’s Wharf casino and the Brisbane Airport redevelopment.

The region, home to one in seven Australians, has put its hand up to host the 2032 games—the first location to announce it would bid for the $5 billion-plus games, under new rules that allow a region, rather than a city, to host the event.

“There is already a need for jobs and growth in the Queensland economy arising from the impact of Covid-19,” Australian Olympic Committee president John Coates said.

“Our partner three levels of government recognise a potential 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games as a critical part of the state and nation’s economic recovery in the short term, quite apart from all of the long-term health, wellbeing, economic and sporting legacies.”

Brisbane deputy mayor Krista Adams, Brisbane Marketing chief executive Brett Fraser, ASM Global Asia Pacific chief executive Harvey Lister and Brisbane Marketing chairman Paul Spiro will discuss the key projects and initiatives driving Brisbane post-pandemic, at The Urban Developer’s upcoming Brisbane Reimagined webinar.

Panellists will touch on major economic priorities and their impact on the property sector as well as recent changes to the City Plan and the impact on the property sector.

This event is a must for anyone invested or considering investing in the greater Brisbane region.

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Rivergate Prepares as Brisbane Olympics Projected to Break Superyacht Record

Credit: Manly Today

Luxurious, privately-owned superyachts carrying A-list guests are expected to sail to Queensland if Brisbane becomes successful in its bid to host the 2032 Olympics, potentially boosting the marine and tourism industries at various riverside hotspots in the region, including Rivergate in Murarrie. 

Prior to the lockdown disruptions, about 160 superyachts were estimated to dock for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and America’s Cup in Auckland. With these numbers, RivergateDirector Tom Hill said that the upcoming Brisbane Olympics could easily attract a record number of superyachts as this region has “exceptional cruising opportunities.”

3SedX6j94YxXv8RNomIrbv7i4BL0h9GcGOaWPHas Photo Credit: Supplied

“We know that there is substantial pent-up demand among superyacht owners to visit Australia and the Olympics would be another huge drawcard, provided we have the necessary infrastructure to accommodate these vessels,” Mr Hill said.

 “The world is experiencing a superyacht building boom and the average size of the vessels is increasing, so we expect there will be many more of these large boats in service by 2032.”

Mr Hill added that research has shown an added 60 superyacht visits a year could bring in 2,000 new jobs and almost $1 billion into the region’s economy.

“Imagine the boost to jobs and the economy if more than three times this number of vessels dropped in for the 2032 Olympic Games.”


The projection comes as Rivergate Marina and Shipyard, which was established in 2006, has unveiled its plans to expand the Murarrie facility, bringing a $200 million superyacht hub able to lift vessels of up to 3,000 tonnes and 90 metres for vital inspections, repairs and refits.

By 2032, Rivergate could be a world-class site and completely ready for the Olympics with its extra berthing options, three new refit sheds, and a 5-storey Trade Centre and resort-style crew accommodation for superyachts visitors.

“As the largest facility in the Asia Pacific capable of lifting out and servicing multiple superyachts, the Rivergate expansion would enable more vessels to visit for the Olympics and stay on to cruise the Great Barrier Reef and other spectacular destinations on our doorstep,” Mr Hill said. 


Rivergate has earned a reputation for being one of three top shipyards in the whole world, respected by the yacht owners and crew for its safe environment, hospitality and highly-skilled workers. 

The facility has near-perfect weather for year-round operations and it’s also close to the services around the capital, making it the given option for boats arriving in Australia for the Brisbane Olympics. 

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Virus-weary Australia cheers prospect of Brisbane Olympics

Credit: Digital Journal

BY AFP     FEB 24, 2021 IN SPORTS

Australians hailed Brisbane's newly minted status as frontrunner to host the 2032 Olympics Thursday as a symbol of hope after a year of pandemic gloom.

Locals welcomed news that the International Olympic Committee had given the sun-kissed city of two million people preferred bidder status, with no rivals currently in the hunt.

"It is an exciting day," said Prime Minister Scott Morrison, acknowledging "we've still got a long way to go."

The IOC announcement does not mean Brisbane is guaranteed to get the games, and there is said to be interest from other cities, but it is now the hot favourite. 

"I think it is great for the economy and to put us on the world map," 25-year-old Gold Coast resident and public relations agent Eliza Elliott told AFP. 

Queensland state premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said victory would help the region recover from the coronavirus pandemic, which has decimated the vital local tourist industry.

Overseas travellers have been mostly barred from entering largely Covid-free Australia for the last year.

"It would bring huge economic benefit and jobs as part of our economic recovery as we come out of Covid," she told ABC radio.

"Most importantly, it gives us hope, it gives us something to look forward to. 2032 may be out in the distance -- but (it's) that firm light at the end of the tunnel."

Sports-mad Australia has hosted the Olympics twice, in Melbourne in 1956 and Sydney in 2000.

Brisbane and the nearby Gold Coast already have extensive sporting infrastructure and Palaszczuk said the bid would be "practical and pragmatic", without the need to build stadiums that will go unused after the Games.

"We already have 85 percent of the venues at the moment -- it's a new norm, which means it's a game changer," she said.

Some local residents expressed concern the games would add to pressure on transportation and other infrastructure in the fast-growing region.

Kristen Oxenford, 25, a professional netballer, said having an Olympics in the region would give a big boost to local sports.

"Having all the facilities in Queensland to be able to use for their training in the future will be a huge boost to our sporting industry," she said. 

Sport Australia chief executive Rob Dalton agreed, noting that sports participation rates among young people had taken a hit during the pandemic.

"Things have been tough, but we've said all along that sport will play a prominent role in lifting the nation's energy and spirits again," he said.

"This would be a beautiful beacon on the hill for all Australians to look towards," added Australian Sports Commission chairwoman Josephine Sukkar.

Games organisers are trialling a new dialogue-based bid system for 2032 after cities shied away from the previous competitive process, wary of soaring costs and being lumbered with white elephant stadiums.

 

 

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18 hours ago, baron-pierreIV said:

OK, what 90% ratings for the pro- choices eleven years away?  What if support dwindles steadily each year -- for whatever reason?  What if it goes down to 25% or 30% support by 2032?  Will they still go on?  People and support are very fickle.  What is the Plan B then?? I would think the IOC would learn something from its Tokyo 2020 experiment.  

 Yes, public support can vary over time. In these uncertain times, I can understand why the IOC will want to lock in a contract with a safe hands host to help “future proof” as best as possible without having a crystal ball.

Once the host contract has been signed, I’m not aware of any Games not going ahead due to public support dropping at any time after the contract is signed. 

Tokyo will be the first Olympic Games held in a pandemic but there have also been several large sporting events held during the pandemic so far. The world is learning, at different paces in different places, how to govern and hold sporting events in a pandemic.  With vaccinations underway, and the learnings so far including Tokyo’s Games which are going ahead it seems minus international fans, it’s reasonable to expect the 2032 Games will go ahead.  

We’re 4 months from Tokyo and also of the expected vote and awarding of the 2032 Games to Brisbane/SEQ at the 138th IOC Session just prior to Tokyo’s Games this July.

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