If CQ Does Not Want a Stadium, I Know Who Does

The CQ NRL Bid has spoken and written often about the STADIUM that will serve as the home for our own CQ NRL team. It has been explained that while the Government has committed and recently re-committed to build the stadium in CQ, it will not be gifted to the CQ NRL team or any other of the many multi-users. The Government will provide a modern, world class stadium that will be an enormous community asset. The stadium will host many local, regional and national sporting and cultural events and the promoter or hirer, including the CQ NRL Team, will pay commercial rates to hire the stadium. These hire fees will pay the Government back the capital costs incurred with the construction and fit out. Regardless of which management model the Government chooses to use, the establishment and operation of the stadium is a commercial venture.

I understand the view expressed by some people that, in their opinion, there are higher priorities for the community other than a new stadium. When Governments budgets for services and for infrastructure development, the money is allocated to a specific area. In this case it’s been allocated to sporting facilities, so the building will have no adverse affect on the many other Government responsibilities like roads, hospitals, schools, police, etc. It will be spent on a stadium. This decision is final – it will happen.

Now here is the twist and the question that we, as Central Queenslanders, must asks ourselves. The question is “DO WE WANT THIS STADIUM IN CENTRAL QUEENSLAND?”

It may sound like a very silly question but as a community it will be our choice, because we are first in line. Meanwhile other cities are lobbying in their communities for their own new stadium.

Last week Townsville unveiled their project for a new 30,000 seat rectangular stadium. Cairns has already launched a plan to build a 20,000 seat rectangular stadium. Both these movements have gathered boisterous local support, and it is only a matter of time before their lobbying efforts are noted by the decision makers in Government.

Townsville is currently well equipped with national standard sporting facilities. Dairy Farmers Stadium, Tony Ireland Stadium, North Ward Sports Reserve, Murray Sporting Complex, Townsville Entertainment Centre are some of the great sporting facilities at their disposal.

Cairns has Barlow Park, Cazalys, Cairns Convention Centre, plus a host of high quality suburban facilities.

Mackay has just opened the brand new Mackay Stadium, which is a multiuse, rectangular stadium that can host NRL, A League, Super 15, as well as Q Cup and local events. It has all the mod cons including replay screen, media facilities, covered grandstand, corporate facilities, multiple team and officials facilities, security systems, concession outlets, etc. Modern – First Class – Government built.

It is now our choice – if we reject the Government’s offer to build a stadium in CQ, it will be built in Townsville and or Cairns and that would be disastrous for CQ.

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