Now another in our special series on the Commonwealth Games, and this time a look at the perceived boost to facilities and tourism.
Does the hype actually stack up?
Ben Downie reports.
In Brisbane’s Southern suburbs, 80 kilometres from what will be the heart of Commonwealth Games action, are world class sporting facilities that couldn’t be overlooked by event organisers.
The prospect of hosting cycling and shooting has the electorate of Chatsworth buzzing.
Steve Minnikin, State Member for Chatsworth: “Look I think the seat of Chatsworth is no different to the rest of Queensland, I think there’s a real excitement now that the Commonwealth Games is only a matter of months away.”
An early legacy is the brand new $59 million Anna Meares Velodrome, constructed with the future of Queensland sport in mind.
Martin Unicomb, Stadiums Queensland: “I think for Queensland having our first indoor velodrome and a track that is going to be positive for all our juniors and our aspiring athletes coming through to train on and build some confidence to compete on.”
The velodrome will be doubled in size to a seating capacity of 3,000 by next year with the potential to hold an olympic audience of 5,000.
With broadcast quality lighting and the ability to host other events, the venue has the potential to make Chatsworth a sporting mecca.
Martin Unicomb, Stadiums Queensland: “When you’re putting on a games that legacy outcome is key and there’s teams that are directly working on that piece and ensuring that all the facilities built for the comm games are supporting that piece.”
That legacy outcome is already starting to take shape.
Martin Unicomb, Stadiums Queensland: “I think a real key indicator in success is about participation. So I think we’re already seeing numbers of just use of the velodrome compared to the outdoor velodrome double.”
Just down the road from the velodrome is the Belmont Rifle Range, home to Commonwealth Games shooting events.
The state government’s $3 million investment ensures the range now boasts fifteen machines and a reduced environmental impact by collecting and recycling the shot.
Despite the measures taken to ensure longevity, there is a dark cloud hanging over it’s future.
Alex Smith, Brisbane Gun Club Vice President: “This facility is actually earmarked for demolition after the Commonwealth Games. That is just lunacy to spend nearly three million dollars on the best facility in the world to only then knock it down.”
With the new Anna Meares Velodrome and the upgrades to Belmont Chatsworth has all the ammunition it needs, to make sure the games go off with a bang.
Ben Downie, QUT News.