Brisbane Olympics: No excuse for overruns, construction body says

The Australian Constructors Association says the 2032 Olympics and Paralympics in Brisbane could be the first Olympiad to come in on budget if the state of Queensland engages with the construction industry early enough in getting venues and infrastructure planned and built.

Brisbane has 11 years to prepare after the International Olympic Committee (IOC) confirmed it as the host on Wednesday, 21 July in a new selection process that saw it picked as preferred bidder in February, doing away with multi-competitor final bids.

In another departure from Olympics norms, some 84% of venues needed for the Games are already built or under construction. 

An A$1bn redevelopment of the historic Gabba cricket stadium (pictured) is the biggest project planned for the event, which has an operating budget of A$4.5bn.

Other new venues include the Brisbane Arena for swimming and water polo, an indoor sport centre for basketball, and a boxing centre at Moreton Bay. A new main athletes’ village will be built on prime Brisbane waterfront at Hamilton.

The $4.5bn doesn’t include transport infrastructure, but Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk told state broadcaster ABC that infrastructure upgrades relevant to the Games were included in the state’s existing infrastructure budget of A$50 billion over four years. 

"This is the longest run up that any host nation has had to deliver the Olympic Games and we must not waste this opportunity," said Australian Constructors Association chief executive Jon Davies. 

"Queensland will be the first host nation to deliver an Olympic Games within budget if it engages early with industry to get the planning right. We need to plan the right infrastructure and appropriately stage it so we can efficiently deliver the project pipeline."

Davies urged government and industry to use the preparations as a chance to build industry capacity.

"The Olympics really gives us the chance to think big and to create a new legacy that will build Queensland’s workforce capability and capacity and innovation," he said. "Let’s set skills legacy targets and unleash innovation so we not only deliver high quality infrastructure but set the construction industry on a more sustainable path."

Image: An A$1bn redevelopment of the historic Gabba cricket stadium, pictured, is the biggest Olympics project planned in Brisbane (Rae Allen/CC BY 2.0)




Story for GCR? Get in touch via email: [email protected]

Latest articles in News