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Suncorp Stadium operating at full capacity while Brisbane’s entertainment venues stay closed

Suncorp Stadium operating at full capacity while Brisbane’s entertainment venues stay closed
July 5, 2021

Queensland Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young has backed sporting fixtures at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium continuing at full capacity while entertainment events in the Queensland capital are cancelled, saying outdoor stadia are “safer than a lot of indoor venues”.

With south east Queensland experiencing its latest round of Coronavirus restrictions, the Brisbane Broncos v Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks NRL match went ahead yesterday afternoon (4th July) with Suncorp Stadium operating at 100% capacity.

The game proceeded (without pre-match entertainment) following consultations with Queensland Health and ongoing adherence to the venue’s COVIDSafe Plan with safely measures in place including the mandatory wearing of masks at all times unless eating and drinking; an absence of cloakroom facilities and every attendee had to sign in at the venue on the Queensland Check In App on arrival.

Despite sustained criticism from businesses confused by a sport stadium running at full capacity while they deal with increased restrictions for the next 12 days, the Queensland Government confirmed on Saturday that the Broncos match would go ahead at Suncorp Stadium

It has also conferment there will be no crowd limits for first Wallabies vs France rugby union Test match at the venue on Wednesday night.

Asked why businesses had to face increased restrictions while spectator sport can proceed, Dr Young backed the venue’s COVIDSafe plans, advising “I know all the work the stadium has done to go through all of the tickets to see where people have purchased tickets from.

“So I am as comfortable as I can be that they are no riskier. In fact, I think (they are) safer than a lot of indoor venues.”

Dr Young said stadiums had “one of the best responses” since the start of the pandemic, adding “they not only have tickets and know where all these people have come from, but they’ve made absolutely sure that everyone uses the QR code going in, and we saw that at the State of Origin.”

Dr Young noted that there hadn’t been any COVID-19 outbreaks at stadiums across the nation because people abided by the restrictions once inside.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk also said there would be less exposure to COVID at Suncorp Stadium because the venue was outdoors and the risk of transmission was higher at indoor locations.

Questions have been asked as to why weekend sporting fixtures at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium went ahead at full capacity while entertainment events in the Queensland capital were cancelled and hospitality and tourism businesses have been forced to close.

Queensland’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry has been calling for payments of up to $25,000 under a COVID-19 Hotspot Recovery to help affected businesses, with more than 95% of owners saying they believe there should be financial help.

Among live entertainment cancelled, the pre-game performance at Suncorp Stadium at yesterday’s game by local musician Beks was shelved. Initially booked to open the game back at the start of June, Beks was informed just one day before the performance was scheduled to happen that all on-field entertainment was cancelled.

Explaining that she was advised that the cancellation was the result of Queensland advice on COVID-19 restrictions, Beks told Tone Deaf “I was told that I would get another opportunity to open the game at another show later in the season.

“They’ve been very apologetic and supportive, it’s just circumstances beyond our control.

“Luckily my performance crew are all good friends of mine and I wasn’t at a great financial loss.”

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