Sector - Sports, Culture & Leisure
Government invest in Birmingham Commonwealth Games
Birmingham and the West Midlands shall receive £778M in funding from the British government and Birmingham City Council in anticipation of the Commonwealth Games being hosted in the region in 2022.
Funding will be spent on projects such as the redevelopment of the Alexander Stadium and the construction of the brand new Sandwell Aquatics Centre after £496M was already invested in the construction of 1,400 new homes at Perry Barr to be used as the Commonwealth Games Village
The investment has been divided with the government accounting for 75% of the funding, this amounting to £594M, and Birmingham City Council correspondingly accounting for 25%, £184M, of the funding.
Mims Davies MP, Minister for Sport and Civil Society, stated: “The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games will be the biggest sporting and cultural event ever held in the city. Watched by 1.5 Bn people worldwide, this is a massive opportunity to showcase the best that Birmingham, the West Midlands, and the whole UK has to offer.
“It will increase participation and encourage more people to get active, and to volunteer to be part of this fantastic event 10 years on from London 2012.”
Both investment and the upcoming games present an abundance of opportunities to the region regarding cultural engagement, business and trade, increased volunteering, boosting physical activity, jobs and skills, education, and tourism.
Councillor Ian Ward, Leader of Birmingham City Council, stated: “The Games are undoubtedly a catalyst, bringing forward many regeneration and infrastructure schemes, so they are delivered much quicker than we could have done so otherwise.
“The event also gives us a golden opportunity to reposition the city and region on a global stage and bring citizens together.”
Regions to host the games usually experience a period of economic growth, as shown by the £1.3Bn boost to the Queensland economy following the Gold Coast 2018 Games. This is imperative for promoting a Global Britain in the aftermath of the UK exiting the EU.
Dame Louise Martin DBE, president of the Commonwealth Games Federation followed up with: “We are pleased to have confirmation of the public investment in Birmingham 2022, which reinforces the Commonwealth Games’ position as a cost-efficient, multi-sport event focused on delivering numerous long-term benefits for the host city.”
As well as this, the games should provide suppliers in the area with considerably more business, as was seen on the Gold Coast where 84% of the contracts surrounding construction and rejuvenation of venues were granted to local companies. Glasgow saw similar benefits after local companies were granted 76% of the contracts.
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