While Allianz Stadium had no trouble whatsoever hosting one of Sia’s debut arena show over the weekend, the venue’s future is in doubt as the NSW Goverment continues to push for both it and ANZ Stadium, aka the Olympic Stadium and Sydney Football Stadium, to be rebuilt.
At a cost, mind you, of $2 billion – and it’s this exorbitant figure that has Sydney-siders worked up, with tens of thousands signing a Change.org petition to leave well enough alone.
As The Music reports, the petition was started just two days ago, and has already accrued almost 73,000 signatures in that short time.
While Sports Minister Stuart Ayres has claimed the expense is “critical for the long-term success of the visitor economy in NSW” over the coming decades, “The Concerned Citizens of NSW” feel differently, imploring the NSW Government to instead invest money into sport at a grass-roots level.
“We, the undersigned, respectfully call on the Premier of NSW, Gladys Berejiklian, and the NSW Cabinet, to reconsider their decision to knock down two perfectly fine sports stadiums – the Olympic Stadium and Sydney Football Stadium – at a staggering cost of $2Billion, to replace them with new ones, at a time when there is ZERO public demand to replace either,” the petition begins.
“We are tired of taxpayer dollars being lavished on building facilities for Sports Big Business, while community sport withers on the vine for lack of facilities and resources.
“We, the undersigned concerned citizens of NSW, believe our money could be better spent with the likes of 100 X $10 million projects being funded across the state, so towns, suburbs and regions could see a thousand fields, pools, courts and arenas bloom, doing something for the wider people of NSW and not merely the tiny percentage involved in elite sport.”
As Sky News reports, Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore has also come out fiercely against the plan, more expensive even than the previous $1.6 billion proposal by former Premier Mike Baird in 2016.
“I really question the government’s priorities,” Ms. Moore said. “They say they’re for the west, but then prioritise sports investment in the east with a massive $700 million cost blowout.”