Five Brisbane lord mayors oppose new stadium at Victoria Park

In a letter sent to Miles, Opposition Leader David Crisafulli, Schrinner and other levels of government, retired town planner Marian Wheeler argued there was no suitable location in the hilly geography of Victoria Park for a “50m to 60m high stadium with a footprint of 12 to 15 hectares”, after examining four locations including over the Inner City Bypass.

“Any stadium at Victoria Park, like Melbourne’s Marvel Stadium, would completely dominate Victoria Park and make the park an area of concrete, rather than open, green space,” her letter read.


Wheeler added that public transport advantages of having a “billion-dollar plus” Cross River Rail station and a new $450 million Brisbane Metro station beside the Gabba were being ignored, “making a mockery of the public investment”.

“Currently 26 bus routes utilise the Woolloongabba Metro Station, giving direct access to the site for many of Brisbane’s southside suburbs.

“If Woolloongabba is replaced as Brisbane’s round stadium or made into a park to make up for the loss of space at Victoria Park, it would make a mockery of the public investment to date at that location.”

What the former mayors say

Campbell Newman (Brisbane lord mayor 2004-2011): “Victoria Park was set aside in the 1870s by citizens who had a vision of a wonderful 130 hectare inner-city park. A massive stadium is a body blow to that vision – it’s vital to now protect the park so that it remains fully accessible public green space for all time.”

Tim Quinn (2003-4): “Hyde Park, Central Park and The Domain give London, New York and
Sydney their character and their breathing space. That’s what Victoria Park should be. Not a
stadium. Fix up the other stadiums and keep Victoria Park as a permanent green legacy.”

Jim Soorley (1991-2003): “People keep talking about a legacy. What better legacy is there than to
have a park like this, so large and so close to the city with brilliant views. It’s our very own Central
Park. It would be madness to build over it with a stadium.”

Sallyanne Atkinson (1985-1991): “Brisbane needs green spaces close to the city to be its lungs. As a local councillor I fought – and sadly lost – a campaign to save important green space in Fig
Tree Pocket. We must not lose this one.”

Bryan Walsh (1975-76): “The Olympic legacy for which we should aim is a successful Games in
venues that we can afford and which will be fully utilised in the future – not some legacy of bricks
and mortar with limited use and accompanied by the loss of a great and beautiful open green
space on the door step of the inner city.”

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