Brisbane was awarded the 2032 Olympics on Wednesday, sparking wild celebrations and fireworks as it became the third Australian city to host the Summer Games after Melbourne and Sydney.
International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach confirmed the widely expected result after delegates voted 72 to five with three abstentions at the IOC summit in Tokyo.
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“The International Olympic Committee has the honor to announce that the 35th Olympics are being held in Brisbane, Australia,” Bach said.
The announcement was greeted with applause by Australian delegates in Tokyo, while in Brisbane fireworks lit up the skies and the crowds that had gathered for the vote went crazy.
Brisbane’s victory was seen with certainty as it was unanimously nominated as the sole candidate for 2032 by the ILO’s 15-member executive council in June.
“I’m so excited – I’m so proud of my state, of my people. I never in my life thought that would happen,” said Queensland State Prime Minister Anna Palazskuk.
“We did it, Queensland! We did it, Brisbane! This is fantastic, this is amazing – tonight is your night, enjoy.”
Australia has already hosted the Olympic Games twice, in Melbourne in 1956 and Sydney in 2000, which is widely considered one of the most successful Games in recent history.
Hundreds of people filled the Brisbane courtyard in Southbank for the announcement, watching the city’s final move to the IOC on a big screen.
Rhys Cush, 24, one of those in the crowd, said he hopes to work on the 2032 Olympics and also watch as a spectator.
“I am a huge fan. I even watched softball this morning,” he told AFP. “I am very excited that the Olympics will come here.”
Lauren Granger, 42, said she hoped the 2032 Olympics would recreate the noise of the successful 2000 Sydney Games.
“We flew to Sydney and we were at the Olympics and it was such a wonderful experience for our family,” he said.
“That was 20 years ago, so we would like to relive it in 2032 with our children.”
– “Historic day” –
Brisbane is home to about 2.3 million people and holds coastal sand. Brisbane is considered more relaxed and less cosmopolitan than the vast southern cities of Australia.
The venues will be spread across Brisbane and nearby cities in Queensland, including the Gold Coast that hosted the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
It is hoped that the Olympics will enhance Brisbane’s profile, making it more attractive to tourists who tend to use it as a starting point for attractions such as the Great Barrier Reef.
An Australian newspaper report said the Games would cost $ 5 billion, with the opening and closing ceremonies taking place at a remodeled Gamba cricket ground.
“This is a historic day, not just for Brisbane and Queensland, but for the country as a whole,” said Prime Minister Scott Morrison.
“Only world cities can secure the Olympics, so this is appropriate for recognizing Brisbane’s position throughout the region and our world.”
The decision means that the IOC has now secured hosts for the next three Summer Olympics, with Paris hosting the event in 2024 and Los Angeles hosting the 2028 Games.
The awarding of the 2032 Olympic Games was the first to take place with a new electoral method adopted in June 2019 in an effort to address application fees and the lack of serious bids.
For the 2024 games, Bach complained that the process had “produced too many losers”, as all Rome, Hamburg and Budapest withdrew.
City offers have become increasingly difficult to make in recent years as costs increase and the financial benefits of running the Games remain unclear.
The vote came two days before the turbulent Tokyo Olympics, which will begin behind closed doors on Friday after a one-year delay due to the pandemic.