North Queensland finally has a new stadium

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It has taken five years to build, $293 million and 2 kilometres of beer lines, but North Queensland finally has a new stadium in the heart of Townsville’s struggling CBD.

Key points:

  • The North Queensland Stadium took two and a half years to build and cost $293 million of state and federal government funds
  • The stadium seats 25,000 and will be the new home of the NRL’s North Queensland Cowboys
  • The stadium is anticipated to create 1,000 jobs during major events and reinvigorate the Townsville CBD’s economy

“Every time I see it, it gives me goosebumps — it’s a world-class stadium,” said rugby league great Johnathan Thurston.

The major infrastructure project has opened its gates after two and a half years in construction, becoming the new home of the North Queensland Cowboys.

Thurston was a champion of the stadium, using his victory speech at the 2015 NRL grand final to lobby for funding.

The Cowboys star has been immortalised in a life-size bronze statue outside the complex.

“Not only does it attract the Cowboys home games, but hopefully we can attract world-class events here to the stadium — that’s what it was built for,” Thurston said.

Sir Elton John will christen the 25,000-seat venue with a performance next weekend.

The stadium was built with $193 million of Queensland Government funding and a $100 million contribution from the Federal Government.

It replaces the suburban Willows Sporting Complex which opened in the 1990s on the outskirts of the city.

The new stadium took 23,000 tonnes of concrete, 190,000 bricks and blocks, and 11,000 square metres of turf to construct.

“1,900 people who call North Queensland home worked on this project — that’s one in every 100 people who live in Townsville helped build this stadium,” said Sports Minister Mick de Brenni.

The venue will create up to 1,000 jobs during major events.

Two kilometres of beer lines have been installed to quench thirsty crowds.

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