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Australian Olympic Committee backs South East Queensland’s 2028 Olympics bid
A potential bid to host the 2028 Olympics from Brisbane and South East Queensland is set to move forward with mayors from across south east Queensland agreeing to fund a $2.5 million study into the feasibility of hosting the Games in the region.
The Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) backed the mayors' moves, with AOC President John Coates releasing a statement advising “the Australian Olympic Committee has supported the concept of a feasibility study from the outset.
“We see this as the first step in the process.”
Even though the Gold Coast and Logan City Councils both voted against contributing money for the study, regional mayors decided to push ahead with the move.
The City of Brisbane will make the biggest single contribution to the study - $870,000 over two years – while the private sector is expected to provide additional funds..
Council of Mayors Deputy Chair and Toowoomba Mayor Paul Antonio said the study would look at the future infrastructure needs of the region, regardless of whether an Olympic bid goes ahead.
Mayor Antonio advised “we're going to be looking at mass people movement, which I think is critical for the growth that's happening here now and well into the future."
He said the Logan and Gold Coast regions would not be left out of the study.
The Council of Mayors expects the private sector will provide additional funding for the study.
Coates added the AOC would back the bid further if the study adhered to two principles from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) around meeting long-term sporting, economic, environmental and social needs and using existing facilities.
His statement continued “we believe this would be possible given the existing venues and infrastructure spread throughout the entire Council of Mayors area of south-east Queensland.
“The current venues centred on Brisbane, the Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast would be boosted by the additional venues being built as part of the 2018 Commonwealth Games.”
A year-long pre-feasibility study released in July concluded the region had the capability to bid for and host an Olympics.
South East Queensland’s existing sporting infrastructure would potentially mean a Brisbane Games would be a relatively low cost option – with the IOC concerned that hosting the Olympics is proving too expensive.
Earlier this week, the mayor of the Italian capital of Rome Virginia Raggi withdrew its bid to host the 2024 Olympics, saying staging of the Games would bury the city in a mountain of debt.
Brazil spent about US $12 billion on the Rio Games last month, which proved a sporting success but was marred by complaints over budget overruns and infrastructure delays.
Los Angeles, Paris and Budapest are the remaining bidders for the 2024 Games, with a decision due in September 2017.
Biding for the 2028 games starts in 2019, a year after the Gold Coast, which is part of the wider Brisbane bid, hosts the smaller Commonwealth Games.
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