Qld Deputy Premier Steven Miles blames Gabba cost blow out on Covid

The Gabba redevelopment has a price tag of $2.7bn.

The Queensland government has defended the $2.7 billion price tag for redeveloping the Gabba ahead of the Brisbane Olympics in 2032, despite the project getting approval without a water clad business case.

The government is on the defensive after recently scrapping plans to establish an independent body to oversee the Games infrastructure, instead bringing overall responsibility to the Premier’s and Deputy Premier’s offices.

But it has since been revealed that the original $1 billion price tag of revamping the Gabba was arrived at without an extensive business case.

“The earlier indicative cost of the Gabba redevelopment was in 2020 dollars, and excluded construction cost escalation and supply chain constraints, and other costs unknown at the time,” Deputy Premier Steven Miles told The Courier Mail.

“It predated the post Covid increases in costs, the global inflation surge and the war in Ukraine. All events that were not predicted in 2020.”

Miles insisted that rebuilding the Gabba for $2.7 billion would deliver “better value for money” than just upgrading the existing stadium.

“If you are unwilling to fund what it is estimated to cost you will not be able to build it, and Queensland will miss this historic opportunity to have a world class oval stadium close to town and the urban renewal that will come with it,” he said.

The Deputy Premier said his department will now focus on completing the Project Validation Report ahead of taking the project to market.

“Once the Project Validation Report is complete, a competitive market process will be launched to allow the design of the Gabba to be developed and for the associated construction works,” he said.