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PROTRACK » GENERAL » Adelaide bid for 2030 Commonwealth Games

Adelaide bid for 2030 Commonwealth Games

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1 Adelaide bid for 2030 Commonwealth Games on Mon Jul 09, 2012 4:21 pm



Gerard confirms Adelaide bid for 2030 Commonwealth Games

Amber Halliday
Adealide Advertiser
July 08, 2012

INFLUENTIAL South Australian businessman and sports supremo Rob Gerard has officially confirmed his audacious plan to bring a Commonwealth Games to Adelaide.

Speaking at the Premier's Olympic Games Appeal dinner at the Adelaide Convention Centre on Friday night, Mr Gerard - owner of Adelaide United and a patron of the Crows - said a successful bid for the 2030 games would leave a legacy of world-class sporting facilities for future generations.

"Sydney's had one, Melbourne's had one, Brisbane has had one, Perth's had one," he said, talking about how Adelaide is the only mainland state capital to never have hosted an Olympic or Commonwealth Games. "It's time to do it. Previous governments didn't do it but with (Premier) Jay (Weatherill), we are going to do it."

Last month the Sunday Mail revealed that Mr Gerard and key players in South Australian sport were putting together a committee to build the case for Adelaide to host the 2030 event.

On Friday Mr Gerard said a 2030 bid would be the next chance an Australian city will have to host the event.

Labelling the bid as "absolutely essential for our city", Mr Gerard did not mention any specific details such as the site for an athlete's village or the venue for the opening and closing ceremonies.

"Let's do it for our grandchildren. Let's do it for the future of our city. Let's get moving," he said.

Mr Gerard said he had been inspired by the way SACA, the SANFL and the State Government had worked together to deliver the redevelopment of Adelaide Oval.

Adelaide was beaten by Kuala Lumpur to stage the 1998 Games, and in 2008 the Rann government withdrew from the pool of contenders for the 2018 event, with then-treasurer Kevin Foley calling the Games "a B-grade event".

Mr Weatherill was not at the appeal dinner - he was on leave - but he has previously backed Mr Gerard's push, saying: "It is a bold idea but I think it is the sort of ambition we should have for South Australia."

On Friday a well-placed Government source confirmed the Weatherill Government would "probably" support the bid but the Government was conscious that, for a 2030 bid, they would be long gone from office.

And some of Adelaide's facilities may also be outdated by 2030, according to the source. The Marion Swimming Centre is one of only a handful of FINA compliant pools in the world now, but it may not be the case in 18 years' time.

Mr Gerard is chairman of the Quarter Club, which aims to raise $250,000 every year to support Olympic athletes.

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