An ambitious ANZ Stadium redevelopment plan has been unveiled, including several spectacular improvements that would see the former Olympic venue become “one of the greatest sports and entertainment stadiums in the world”.
That’s the opinion of ANZ chief executive Daryl Kerry – and after seeing a video impression of the proposed plans, it’s hard to argue.
The highlights include:
- A retractable roof that allows sunlight through and can be closed in 20 minutes, described as a ‘Superdome’, to make all events weatherproof and allow the stadium to host big concerts.
- A lighting system that would ‘curtain off’ those unsightly empty upper levels of seating for smaller matches and create a more intimate atmosphere, long viewed of the stadium’s biggest shortcomings.
- Seating at both ends of the ground replaced by moveable stands that could be moved to within five metres of the playing field, eliminating another one of the greatest bugbears of the current setup at ANZ.
- Public fan zones in the stadium’s concourse.
- Spectacular home team theming via lights on the outside of the stadium.
- Bars and restaurants.
But the proposal would need a $250 million contribution from the NSW government, with the owners, Stadium Australia Group, reportedly prepared to put in the remaining $100 million if their lease is extended beyond 2031, when the group is scheduled to hand ownership of the stadium back to the government.
So it’s all a bit pie-in-the-sky at the moment – but it would be a massive shot in the arm for the oval- and round-ball codes, and Sydney in general, if they can turn this vision into reality: