Adelaide is top contender, says Games chief
Reece Homfray, 17 April 2019, The Advertiser
COMMONWEALTH Games Australia boss Craig Phillips says Adelaide makes the most compelling case as a host city in the Commonwealth, and will engage in talks with the State Government today.
Mr Phillips met business, sport and tourism groups yesterday and will be joined by CGA president Ben Houston for meetings with Sports Minister Corey Wingard, Tourism Minister David Ridgway, the Adelaide City Council and the Office for Recreation and Sport today. The office is leading a feasibility study into the possibility of Adelaide bidding for the 2026 Games.
“You have to go a long way to beat Adelaide in terms of a city that could really come alive with the festival of the Games, along the Riverbank, the Convention Centre and Adelaide Oval,” Mr Phillips said. “We see it being a very vibrant place.
“In fact, we were talking about it in meetings today – you would have to go a long way to find cities anywhere else in the Commonwealth that have the same sort of offering of venues in close proximity to each other but also to the centre of town. There is still a long way to go but if the Government keeps going and finds a compelling enough argument to host the Games here, we think it would be a great Games in 2026.” Mr Phillips said he was aware of the UK-based Commonwealth Games Federation talking with other cities around the world for 2026. The next Games in 2022 will be held in Birmingham, England.
“But the sense we’re getting (from the CGF) is the dialogue they’ve had with others isn’t as advanced as we are here,” he said. “(We are here) to connect with government about the feasibility study and how they’re tracking, and how we can input into their work.
“And to meet with the new council and Lord Mayor to get a sense of their level of support for it happening. As well as key influences in the community and business about the appetite for supporting a Games and what they see as important for beyond the 12 days of sport – what are the benefits and legacies?” Mr Phillips said there have not been any talks about the timing of a Games in Adelaide – touted as either March or October – and how to do so with minimal disruption to normal business at Adelaide Oval.
Mr Phillips has brought with him copies of the “post-Games report” from the Gold Coast that was released earlier this month and detailed a $2.5 billion economic boost to the Queensland Government. Adelaide was described as “largely Games-ready” by a CGF report last year.
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