HomeCouncilBusiness case for new Bundaberg Region stadium

Business case for new Bundaberg Region stadium

business case stadium
Member for Bundaberg Tom Smith and Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs Director Andrew Gifford with Mayor Jack Dempsey at Salter Oval.

Bundaberg Regional Council has sought State Government support for a business case to investigate the feasibility of a new up-to-10,000 seat stadium for the Bundaberg Region.

Mayor Jack Dempsey said a stadium of this size was long overdue for the region and Council would undertake a study to ensure infrastructure met the community’s current and future needs.

“Our population is booming, we now have 102,076 people living in the Bundaberg Region,” Mayor Dempsey said.

“It’s not just our population – our economic growth is second highest in the state for the second year in a row, and the strongest it has been in 16 years.

“We need social infrastructure and facilities that meet the needs of our growing region.”

Mayor Dempsey said neighbouring regions each had stadiums of this size, despite having smaller populations and less economic growth.

According to data from Austadiums and the Australian Bureau of Statistics, stadium capacity in Rockhampton and Gladstone outpaces the 600-seat Salter Oval.

  • Bundaberg population 102,076; economic growth 7.2%
  • Rockhampton population 83,604; Browne Park capacity 7,000; economic growth 0.8%
  • Gladstone population 40,000; Marley Brown Oval capacity 6,000; economic growth 3.0%

“Council, in its 2024 advocacy policy document, has identified the need for enhanced sporting infrastructure,” Mayor Dempsey said.

“A business case will look at how a stadium would be used by the sporting community, and the economic benefits of such a facility.

“The community is driving the demand for a rectangular stadium for the Bundaberg Region, and the need is showcased when we have NRL games here or when this community misses out because we do not have facilities which can suitably cater to large-scale events.

“We know that this sort of social infrastructure is a key economic driver in regional communities like Bundaberg.

“The potential for the Bundaberg Region to be host to state and national level sporting events brings with it increased tourism, job opportunities and a surge in local business activity.”

Council will contribute 50 per cent of the cost towards a business case and has sought funding from the State Government for the other half.

Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs Director, and Bundaberg local, Andrew Gifford said building a stadium of this size would support local junior sport pathways as well as providing improved facilities for hosting national professional games in the region.

“We're into our third year of bringing our NRL game here to Bundaberg, but there are some limitations with this field,” Andrew said.

“We have to bump in infrastructure, bump out infrastructure.

“What the city needs, as the Mayor said, is a standalone rectangular stadium that can not only drive investment to the area, but it'll make more property for other rectangular sports.

“The Bulldogs and the NRL will support a stadium here in Bundaberg as a stand-alone rectangular field.”

State Member for Bundaberg Tom Smith supported the need for a business case and he said the stadium would enable the region to continue to grow its culture, sport and entertainment lifestyle.

“That's why we are looking at what ways can we ensure that we are providing for the people of the community and for the different sports,” he said.

“I think one of the key opportunities that Bundaberg and the greater Wide Bay has missed out on is having a base for our junior pathway development.

“Bundaberg can lead the way in developing a major sporting facility that isn't just for the NRL, isn't just for A-League and for our major sporting codes but will actually benefit those people who are living in Bundy week in, week out, and the greater Wide Bay region.”

Mr Smith said the State Government had not committed any money to the project as yet.



  1. Thank you Tom .I hope the oval is big enough to take an AFL game as I beleive this sport requires the largest amount of space .

  2. Fantastic idea which is greatly needed and long overdue. I’m very impressed with how the present Council is encouraging positive growth and prosperity within the Bundaberg region.

  3. Yes a focus on sport is great. Sport improves health by lowering obesity & diabetes. AFL or Rugby would be a great choice as it has national competition for both men & women. Also opens up the notion that we might be able to host an Olympic event at either the stadium or the pool?

  4. What would be great is if you picked a new location that we could develop around so it didn’t add traffic to a already very busy area. Thabeban, Ashfield, near the new hospital would be good places. This could also allow a smaller area like Jublee park to be redeveloped into another use especially the bit that has the shut down CQ leagues club.

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