The Olympics are coming to Redlands Coast in 2032.
With Brisbane being named as host city for the Games of the XXXV Olympiad, Redland City Mayor Karen Williams confirmed Redlands Coast would be an event venue city for the Canoe Slalom events at the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“This is a fantastic opportunity, not only for locals to enjoy the spectacle and excitement of a Games event right in our city’s backyard, but also to showcase our wonderful Redlands Coast to the world,” Cr Williams said.
“A purpose-built Olympic-standard Redland Whitewater Centre to host the canoe slalom events is part of the integrated Redlands Coast Adventure Sports Precinct for which Birkdale Community Precinct on Old Cleveland Road East, Birkdale, is the preferred site.”
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced in Tokyo tonight that Brisbane had been selected to host the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Cr Williams said what was even more exciting about the whitewater venue is that it would be a legacy facility for generations to come.
“There is ample land for such a facility to be accompanied by other uses without having to impact the site’s important environmental and cultural values. Its overall legacy opportunities are compelling,” she said.
“Subject to vision development and master planning, the location for the Redland Whitewater Centre within the precinct is likely to be the area proximate to the vacant cleared land to the precinct’s northern corner, given the known values of the land and the opportunities it presents.
“Council will soon be able to share with the community the Vision for the Birkdale Community Precinct, which will capture and integrate the aspirations and ideas of the community as expressed through the recent community engagement.
“It is a large precinct that has space for many exciting projects that would enhance lifestyle and benefit communities and economies. The Redland Whitewater Centre, which has a small footprint and will be on already cleared land, would be just one of several community ventures and activities that the 62-hectare site could accommodate.”
Cr Williams said similar Olympic facilities elsewhere had demonstrated substantial local community and economic benefits, including during construction and for ongoing operation.
“It will bring forward important transport infrastructure, in particular, the much-needed duplication of the Cleveland railway line and the completion of the Eastern Busway to Capalaba,” Cr Williams said.
“The Redlands Coast Adventure Sports Precinct is identified as a catalyst project in Our Redlands – A Corporate Plan to 2026 and Beyond.
“It is anticipated that about 150 jobs could be sustained through the building and delivery of the adventure sports precinct, with an annual contribution of $52 million to the local economy.
“It also has significant opportunities to be used as a swift-water rescue training facility for emergency services.”
Australian Olympic Team paddler Jessica Fox who will compete in the Canoe Slalom events in Tokyo said the 2032 Olympics decision was an “amazing opportunity”.
“We all know the impact the Sydney Olympics had on all of us, on sport in Australia, the general public, so to see it come home would be amazing. It’s something the kids, watching the Olympics today, could look forward to in a few years’ time,” the three-time Olympian said from the athletes’ village in Tokyo.
“It’s incredible to think of a new whitewater venue in Redlands Coast. It would be amazing for the sport, for the community, tourism and for the general public wanting to try something new.
“We’ve seen the impact Penrith (Whitewater Stadium in NSW) has had on us and our sport and to have another world class venue in Australia would be incredible.
“We see this venue here (in Tokyo) and it would just be amazing to have that back home in Redlands Coast.”
Fellow Australian team member at the Tokyo Olympics, Russell Island-raised sailor Mara Stransky said Brisbane’s selection for 2032 was “fantastic for Australian sport in so many ways”.
“It’s the 8-year-old of today who we can be really proud of when the Olympics come here,” she said.
Stransky, 22, who will compete in the Laser Radial class in Tokyo, said an Olympics whitewater centre in Redlands Coast would be a great asset for the city.
Cr Williams said Redlands Coast residents had the chance to cheer on the Australian Olympic team in Tokyo during the Olympics Live free event to be held in Cleveland from this Saturday (24 July).
“There will be a large LED screen set up in Bloomfield Street Park broadcasting all of the excitement and achievements from the Tokyo Olympics live,” she said.
Olympics Live Presented by Westpac Redlands Coast at Bloomfield Street Park, Cleveland, will operate from 10am to 4pm, Saturday 24 July to Friday 30 July.
Cr Williams said the Council of Mayors (SEQ), which has been instrumental in the Brisbane 2032 proposal, had good reason to celebrate their success.
“The Games are predicted to deliver some $8.1 billion in economic and social benefits for Queensland, and $17.6 billion nationally,” Cr Williams said.
For more Olympics information, go to redland.qld.gov.au/olympics
What exactly is the event that Redlands Coast will host in 2032?
The sport of canoe slalom, in which competitors in canoes and kayaks navigate a series of whitewater rapid challenges, was modelled from ski slalom and began in Switzerland in 1932. In its early days, it was first performed on flat water but later switched to whitewater rapids. In canoe slalom the boats are small, light and agile, allowing for greater manoeuvrability through rapids.
Canoe slalom made its debut at the 1972 Munich Games. Slalom racing was not competed again in the Olympic Games until the 1992 Barcelona Games. Canoe slalom racers compete in four events, three for men and one for women, over the same course.