Brisbane elected as host city for XXXV Olympiad
The International Olympic Committee has this evening confirmed Brisbane and South East Queensland as host for the 2032 Olympic Games.
The decision was announced after a full meeting of International Olympic Committee (IOC) delegates in Tokyo in advance of the opening of the delayed 2020 Games this week.
Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games President Hashimoto Seiko congratulated Brisbane on its winning bid, commenting “my heartfelt congratulations go to the people of Brisbane and Australia.
"Over the past year, the world's sporting community has faced the multiple challenges of COVID-19; however, under the steadfast leadership of IOC president Thomas Bach, the Olympic movement has made steady progress, culminating in today's decision in favour of Brisbane."
Queensland's delegation - including Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, Brisbane Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner and Federal Sports Minister Richard Colbeck - were in attendance for the announcement, having presented Brisbane’s bid to the IOC.
The Games, to be held from 23rd July to 8th August 2032, to be immediately followed by the Paralympics will be staged at more than 30 venues across south-east Queensland in Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Logan, Ipswich and Redlands, with some events to be held in Cairns and Townsville.
While the bid relied on extensive use of existing facilities and infrastructure developed for the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, an expanded Gabba stadium to be the centrepiece of the Games.
New facilities are expected to include ASM Global’s Brisbane Live indoor arena, a whitewater course in Logan and a new aquatic facility.
Two athlete villages are expected to be constructed - one in Brisbane, the other on the Gold Coast.
Up to 14,000 athletes will be accommodated in the Brisbane village in the inner north-eastern suburb of Albion, described as Queensland's largest waterfront urban renewal program.
During final deliberations, Brisbane faced little opposition with offers from India, Indonesia, Qatar, Spain and Germany failing to make it past the IOC board stage.
Arguments for Brisbane included Queensland being the fastest growing state in Australia and the fact that hosting the Games would align with a strategy to improve local transport infrastructure and promote economic growth.
Consultants KPMG have estimated economic and social benefits at $8.1 billion for Queensland and $17.6 billion for Australia.
Concern over Tokyo Coronavirus cases
In advance of the opening of the Games this week, a number of confirmed Coronavirus cases in the Olympic Village has seen Toshiro Muto, Chief Executive of the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee has suggest they could be cancelled.
Muto said he would keep an eye on infection numbers and hold "discussions" if necessary.
Asked about infections at a news conference earlier today, he stated "we can't predict what will happen with the number of coronavirus cases. So we will continue discussions if there is a spike in cases
"We have agreed that based on the coronavirus situation, we will convene five-party talks again. At this point, the coronavirus cases may rise or fall, so we will think about what we should do when the situation arises."
Covid-19 cases are rising in Tokyo and the Games, postponed last year because of the pandemic, will be held without spectators.
More than 70 people associated with the Games have tested positive ahead of Friday's opening ceremony.
Images: Celebrations in Brisbane to mark the city's award of the 2032 Olympics (top), the planned Brisbane Live development (middle) and concepts for athletics at a redeveloped Gabba (below).
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