New Velodrome Build


Brisbane to host elite international track cycling event
Fri 03 Aug, 2018

Months after Australia dominated the cycling with 14 medals at the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, the government has secured a prestigious cycling event for Brisbane that will serve as a qualifying event for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

The 2019 UCI Track World Cup, secured by the Queensland Government via Tourism and Events Queensland in partnership with Brisbane City Council via Brisbane Marketing and Cycling Australia, is expected to attract thousands of elite cyclists and spectators to Queensland’s capital.

Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones said the event reaffirmed Queensland’s position as a global sporting events hub and follows the announcement of the Brisbane Cycling Festival package of events from 2019-2021.

“The Commonwealth Games put Queensland on the map as one of the major events capitals of the world,” she said.

“We’re building on that legacy to secure more major events to Queensland to grow our tourism sector. 

“The UCI Track World Cup will be staged in December 2019 and will make use of vital Commonwealth Games legacy infrastructure at the Anna Meares Velodrome - the home of indoor cycling events during the Games.

“This event will see some of the world’s best cyclists converge on Brisbane, luring cycling fans from across the globe to Queensland to experience the best of what we have to offer in our state.

“Before the Tissot Track World Cup we’ll host the inaugural Brisbane Cycling Festival from March to April next year. This event is forecast to generate about $8 million across its three-year lifetime.

“The popularity of cycling amongst Australians coupled with the high calibre of cyclists the event is set to attract will ensure the success of this new Queensland event.

“The UCI Track World Cup adds to Queensland’s growing events calendar, now worth $780 million to the state’s economy.”

Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said securing the 2019 UCI Track World Cup was another coup for Brisbane, following the recent announcement the city would stage the Brisbane Cycling Festival.

“Hosting the 2019 UCI Track World Cup once again demonstrates our city’s ability to stage first-rate cycling events and the world-class Anna Meares Velodrome will be a fitting host venue for the competition,” Cr Quirk said.

“This is the first UCI world track cycling event to be hosted by Australia since 2012, establishing Brisbane as the home of track racing.

“Major events are important to Brisbane – they draw in visitors and fill hotel rooms, boost the hospitality, service and retail sectors and profile the city on the world stage.”

Cycling Australia CEO Steve Drake said it would be fantastic to see this premier event held in the world-class Anna Meares Velodrome.

“We saw during the Commonwealth Games just how passionate fans are for the Australian Cycling Team, so we cannot wait,” Mr Drake said.

Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Cycling Track Gold Medallist Alex Porter said he couldn’t wait to line up in the green and gold for a Track World Cup in his own back yard.

“It’s such an important part for the build-up for Tokyo 2020 and having a home crowd advantage gives us all such a buzz,” Porter said.

Media contact: 0419 620 447


New cycling festival builds on Commonwealth Games legacy
Fri 29 Jun, 2018

Brisbane has secured a new world-class cycling festival commencing in 2019 which will deliver a multi-million-dollar boost for Queensland’s economy and build on the legacy of the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.

The Brisbane Cycling Festival will include a package of at least three cycling events, secured from 2019-2021, including a National Road Series event, Cycling Australian Track National Championships, and the final of the Six Day international track series.

Minister for Tourism Industry Development Kate Jones said the deal, secured via Tourism and Events Queensland in partnership with the Brisbane City Council via Brisbane Marketing and Cycling Queensland, was a great win for Queensland.

“Queensland just hosted a raft of cycling events during the Commonwealth Games and this new event is a great opportunity to again showcase the state-of-the art Anna Meares Velodrome – one of the great pieces of infrastructure left behind as a legacy of the Games,” she said.

“Together we expect these events to inject upwards of $8 million into our economy each year of the three-year deal.

“The event highlights the success of Tourism and Events Queensland’s events strategy which has seen the It’s Live! in Queensland events calendar double in value to $780 million and has seen major events like this secured for the state which play to Queensland’s strengths.

“Cycling is quickly growing in popularity with almost four million Aussies regularly riding a bike. This together with the high calibre of Australian and international elite talent who will compete in the festival is sure to attract national and international participants to Queensland’s capital.”

Assistant Tourism Industry Development Minister Meaghan Scanlon said by consistently securing elite-level events, Queensland had stamped its authority as one of the world’s leading destinations for sporting events.

“The Brisbane Cycling Festival adds to Queensland’s calendar of blockbuster sporting events and reaffirms the state as the home of endurance sport in the Asia-Pacific region.

“By hosting a mix of elite and amateur events, we’re appealing to the masses. We want pro-tour fans to come out and see some of the biggest names in the sport but we also want more Queenslanders to get on a bike – that’s what’s so great about this festival.

“This festival will also be a bonus for local business operators. We expect thousands of spectators from around the world to converge on Brisbane for these events, keen to experience the best of what Queensland has to offer.”

Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said securing the Brisbane Cycling Festival was a huge coup for Brisbane, with the city hosting a unique range of professional, amateur and mass participation events over three weeks.

“Brisbane has already demonstrated its ability to host world-class sporting events, and the Brisbane Cycling Festival will be the latest in the city’s major events calendar,” Cr Quirk said.

“With the world-class Anna Meares Velodrome and 680km of bikeway infrastructure, the combination of track and road cycling events will showcase Brisbane to the world during the festival. In addition to professional competition events, local cyclists will also have the chance to get involved with a series of activities including a mass-participation ride across the city.

“The Brisbane Cycling Festival will enhance our reputation as a major cycling destination, the 20,000 annual visitors to the festival will deliver an $8 million economic benefit to Brisbane, supporting local jobs as well as accommodation, retail, hospitality and service sectors.”

Russell Hinwood, Cycling Queensland President said the introduction of the Brisbane Cycling Festival would be a game changer for the sport of ​cycling in Queensland. 

“Brisbane will be promoted as a fantastic cycling participation and spectator destination,” Mr Hinwood said.

“Cycling will obtain unprecedented exposure to local, national and international audiences and opportunities will be provided for all levels of Queensland and national cyclists to participate in world-class events as part of the festival.

“Importantly it also provides the opportunity to promote cycling as an inclusive sporting and recreational activity beneficial to people's, health and wellbeing. 

“Cycling Queensland is excited to be a part of the Brisbane Cycling Festival as it aligns with our mission to encourage more Queenslanders to ride, race and watch the sport of ​cycling."

Steve Drake, Cycling Australia CEO and Managing Director said Queensland was setting the standard for multi-discipline big ticket cycling events and he commended all involved for their hard work in pulling this together.

“The events will showcase the best of Australian cycling on the world stage and for the fans it’s a chance to see the superstars of today and the champions of tomorrow as we head towards the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.” 

Media contact: 0419 620 447


Original Commonwealth Games venues back in the spotlight
Thu 05 Apr, 2018

Queensland’s original games venues are once again hosting the world’s greatest athletes, with the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018) now underway.

Minister for Sport Mick de Brenni said both the purpose-built Sleeman Sports Complex (SSC) and the Queensland Sports and Athletics Centre (QSAC), which hosted events for the 1982 Commonwealth Games are still in regular use today, more than 35 years later.

“These two venues were built more than 35 years ago, but they’ve stood the test of time,” Mr de Brenni said.

“Nearly a million athletes use these facilities every year, from grassroots sport right through to elite levels.

“Just imagine the volume of people that will benefit from the infrastructure that’s been delivered through GC2018.”

Mr de Brenni said the Sleeman Sports Complex would become a two-time Commonwealth Games venue, with the Anna Meares Velodrome hosting the Track Cycling event from 5 to 8 April.

“I had the opportunity to ride around the Velodrome last year, and it’s truly a top class facility,” Mr de Brenni said.

“The Velodrome recently hosted the National Championships, as well as the English and Japanese National Team’s Training Camps.

“The Australian Swimming Team has also been using the Brisbane Aquatic Centre at SSC for their training in the lead up to the Games.

“Local swimmers Cameron McEvoy, the Campbell sisters and Emily Seebohm will lead a 40-strong Queensland contingent competing for Australia in the pool.”

QSAC also hosted local and international athletes ahead of CG2018 on its recently resurfaced State Athletics Facility (SAF) track and Main Track.

Minister for Sport Mick de Brenni said the recent upgrades put Queensland ahead of the pack, with QSAC the only facility in Australia which has two 400m ten lane tracks co-located at the one venue.

“Queensland athletes punch above their weight, and that’s because we support them with better facilities and better training programs than other states,” Mr de Brenni said.

“We’ve delivered $320 million worth of additional sporting and community infrastructure ahead of the Games, including three new sporting venues, one multipurpose venue, and seven upgraded venues.

“World class inclusions like the Rekortan track surface we’ve just put down at QSAC give our Queensland athletes the edge, so I have every expectation we’ll see them all perform at a very high level over the next ten days.”

Media contact: Cat Milton 0447 117 132


A parametric quest: Anna Meares Velodrome
Tue 03 Oct, 2017
Cox Architecture has harnessed the full potential of parametric design to create a “taut and elegant” velodrome at Brisbane’s Sleeman Sports Complex, inspired by the speed, precision and expertise of track cycling.

In 1982, Brisbane hosted the Commonwealth Games. The effects of preparing the city for the competition were transformative and long-lasting. Now the south-east Queensland region is again transforming itself, this time to accommodate the 2018 XXI Commonwealth Games. While the majority of events will take place in the host city of the Gold Coast, track cycling will be held in a major new building at the Sleeman Sports Complex, in the southern Brisbane suburb of Chandler.

The Sleeman Sports Complex is a gathering of several facilities built for the 1982 games’ swimming, gymnastics and cycling events. The newly completed Anna Meares Velodrome by Cox Architecture is an important building that not only anchors and invigorates the southern precinct of the Sleeman Complex for the 2018 event, but is also conceived to have wider effects in the community during the decades ahead.

The velodrome is set within a “bushy” landscape, its pale, faceted skin acting as a canvas for dynamic effects of light and shadow. Image:  Christopher Frederick Jones
In the context of the Sleeman Complex, the new velodrome promotes reflection on the progress of thirty-five years, not only the development of the region of south-east Queensland, but also the increasing sophistication underpinning the procurement, design and delivery of large sporting facilities. While budgets are still lean (this velodrome cost around 33 percent of London’s 2012 Olympic cycling facility), governments have embraced thinking beyond the singular event, toward planning for legacy and a continuous-use case.

Of course, effective architects think readily through the “not only but also” scenarios that give any brief an interesting complexity and the added delight of anticipating the unanticipated (think of Alvar Aalto’s lion). While it may be challenging to account for multiple-use cases for such a specific structure, the design of the velodrome embraces these challenges by engaging with and activating a range of conditions, including those of its setting.

A refined object in its “bushy” landscape setting, the parabolic “Pringles chip” roof of the velodrome connects to the ground with canted steel columns. The form is clad in a membrane, faceted through its application to structural panels enclosing the volume. The tense wrapping is all-white – an expectant canvas for dynamic effects of light and shadow as the sun throws the shapes of surrounding trees onto the surface during the day and projected imagery enlivens events at night.

Set into a sloping terrain, the velodrome maintains a concourse-level connection to ground so that access is maximized around a large arc of the perimeter to manage the flows of significant events. An arc of the south-eastern perimeter is accessed at the ground level, used by athletes and broadcast media in event “overlay” and by the users of the velodrome in “legacy” mode. Here, banked up over four levels, a fitness centre, a specialized sports physiotherapy clinic, office tenancies and a function “pod” have an address.

This lower entrance to the building introduces the raison d’être of the velodrome in a novel way. Framed by an opening in a painted masonry wall, the underside of the cycle track – of trussed supports and slender planks of Siberian pine – is revealed in gloriously crafted detail. Third-generation track designer Schuermann Architects, led by Ralph Schürmann, was the specialist contracted to the project. A veteran producer since the 1920s of over 125 tracks and velodromes worldwide, the practice holds its intellectual property close, yet this underbelly “sneak preview” gives a rare glimpse into the slow traditions of track construction.

This revelation underlines the track as the crafted heart of the building around which everything else takes shape. In designing the velodrome hall, the architects worked with the specifics of overall dimensions and angles – a 250-metre track with near-forty-five-degree banking turns – but were never privy to Schürmann’s detail. When the time came for installation, a team of German carpenters, in a fine demonstration of skill and expertise, systematically realized its construction in a matter of weeks. The pale, efficient beauty of this engineered timber form is a jewel encased by the complementary and equally materially adept steel-and-membrane structure.

The architects’ characterization of the building as a “glorified shed” belies the effort through which the focus on maximum efficiency has become a fulcrum of architectural expression, much as a racing bicycle exacts the greatest beauty and performance from the least material means. “It’s all about the track as a crafted thing,” says Cox Architecture director Richard Coulson, “and the velodrome roof is crafted in response – one in timber, one in steel, and with equal rigour. There is little that is decorative apart from the expression of the membrane, with its facets that show strongly in the sunlight, which is simply the effect of pushing and pulling the fabric.” Further embellishments are limited but striking and make the most of few elements. A masonry wall facing the ring-road is made visually impressive by sequencing courses of cut and rotated blocks, catching the sun and graphically underscoring the datum of the main concourse. Subtle uses of colour in public and circulation areas reference the technical signals of the track: the blue of the “Côte d’Azur” apron, the black of the line that marks the length of the track and the red of the “sprinter’s line.”

Cox Architecture harnessed the full potential of parametric design to create the optimum velodrome. Similar to Hopkins Architects’ design for the London Olympic Velodrome, the hyperbolic paraboloid or “Pringles chip” roof is most synergistic with the form of the track and associated spectating, pulled up over the straights and pulled down on the banks. Cox used Grasshopper, the Rhino-integrated graphical algorithmic editor, to tease out the full range of opportunity within the constraints. Manipulation of the structure was tested through a range of lenses, from rainwater flow to air movement and sightlines for all settings (1,500-person legacy seating mode to 4,000-person event overlay mode). Working through these factors in search of deep understanding, the architects moved through iterations toward the final elegant sufficiency of structure, material and volume.

Iterative cycles of calculation-based modelling also enabled the achievement of beautiful diffuse daylighting through the enclosing membrane, ensuring that the track is shadow-free, which is necessary for rider concentration and safety at speed. Considering the extent of structure exposed to the interior, this is a feat, with no shadow cast between the opaque central “oculus” ring and the translucent part of the roof, nor between the membrane and the steel elements. Daylight is instantly boosted for broadcast via permanently installed LED sports lighting, the first to be fitted in a velodrome.

With the optimal temperature for track cycling around 28°C, interior comfort in the velodrome hall is managed through natural ventilation, supported by large fans over the infield, with additional fans “bumped in” as required for spectator comfort. The track infield supports the legacy function of ball courts (e.g. futsal), which are expected to be used several nights a week. The installation of partition netting enables simultaneous use of courts and track, further maximizing the ongoing viability of the facility.

The velodrome’s siting within the Sleeman Sports Complex sets up a “cycle precinct” (a vision akin to the 2012 London Olympic legacy of a “Velopark”) by making a macro connection to the adjacent BMX Supercross Track. A portion of the south-eastern edge of the velodrome perimeter is formed as an amphitheatre of stone and soft grasses, a great prospect for viewing BMX events. The related concourse operates as a cafe plaza that serves both velodrome and BMX events.

The Anna Meares Velodrome renders the ethereal allure of the crafted track and the speed, precision and expertise of track cycling within a taut and elegant architecture of inspiring quality. During the project, Schürmann shared an insight with the architects that took hold in their imaginations through their parametric quest for the best by the least means. Despite his professional pursuit of the design of the fastest track, tweaking each one for anticipated gains, Schürmann offered that a great space will arguably have the more significant effect on an athlete’s performance, an excellent thought to hold in mind as aspiring athletes experience this new arena in the years ahead.

Chandler to host 2014 Australian Swimming Titles
Sun 31 Mar, 2013

REDLAND sports lover will have Australia’s best swimmers on their doorstep when the 2014 EnergyAustralia Swimming Championships are held at the Sleeman Sports Centre, Chandler in April next year.

The April 1-6 meet will double as a selection qualification meet for the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games team and the chance to race some of the best swimmers in the world in front of a home crowd at the 2014 Pan Pacific Championships on the Gold Coast in August.

With around half of Australia’s best swimmers hailing from Queensland, including five-time Olympic medallist Alicia Coutts, Olympic silver medallists Emily Seeboh and Christian Sprenger as well as up-and-comer Cameron McEvoy, the EnergyAustralia Swimming Championships in Brisbane is expected to bring fierce competition and a great crowd.

Swimming Australia CEO Mark Anderson said the EnergyAustralia Swimming Championships will be a great opportunity for Brisbane to showcase some of the strongest swimming the nation has seen, as the team prepares for two major international competitions later that year.

“With 2014 being such an important year for the sport, kicking off in Perth in January and culminating in the Pan Pacs on the Gold Coast, Brisbane is the ideal place to host next year’s EnergyAustralia Swimming Championships,” said Anderson.

“Many of our best athletes and coaches are based in South East Queensland and Swimming Queensland has a very active and vibrant club scene in the area as well, which are all good ingredients for a great swim meet, and plenty of support for our elite athletes at the Brisbane Aquatic Centre.”

Queensland Minister for Sport, Steve Dickson MP, said having both the EnergyAustralia Swimming Championships and the Pan Pacific Championships in Queensland next year was a major victory for the state.

“The Brisbane Aquatic Centre at the Sleeman Sports Complex is no stranger to hosting major swimming events with the venue being used for the 2008 and 2012 Australian Age Championships, the 2010 Australian Short Course Championships and the 2002 and 2006 Australian Championships,” said Mr Dickson. 

“With a home town crowd cheering on Queensland’s swimmers we can expect to see some great times and hopefully a large contingent of Queenslanders will make the national squad to represent Australia and compete for gold in Glasgow.”

“Events like the 2014 EnergyAustralia Swimming Championships deliver economic and social benefits to the local community. Around 600 competitors and their families travel from around the country to compete and stay in local accommodation and visit local restaurants.”

The 2014 EnergyAustralia Swimming Championships will take place from April 1 to 6 at the Brisbane Aquatic Centre, Chandler.

The 2014 Commonwealth Games will be staged in Glasgow from July 23 while the 2014 Pan Pacific Championships will be held on the Gold Coast from August 21.


Riding high: new BMX track for Brisbane
Mon 27 Sep, 2010

An Olympic standard BMX track and second swimming pool will be included in a $13.3 million revamp of the Sleeman Sports Complex in Brisbane's south.

It is the biggest boost for the centre at Chandler since it was opened for the Commonwealth Games in 1982.

Sports Minister Phil Reeves called for tenders for both projects yesterday.

He promised the BMX track would be finished by March 2011, while the second Olympic-sized pool would be finished a few months later.

The second Olympic-sized pool at Chandler's Sleeman Sports Complex is planned to be finished by mid-2011.

The bike track will be the first of its type in the southern hemisphere.

It was immediately welcomed by Brisbane-based Olympian, “Kamikaze”, who described the facility as “awesome.”

“I can't wait to get on the track and try it out when it's complete," he said.

BMX Australia president Barry Knight said the building of a supercross track was testament to the growing number of riders participating in the sport.

“Coming off the first ever BMX Olympic event at the Beijing Games, this track will be of exceptional benefit to our Olympic hopefuls for London 2012, giving our riders the chance to train on a world class track,” he said.

“This also provides us with the opportunity to host more international events, bringing the best riders in the world to Australia.”

Local MP Steve Kilburn said BMX riding was a boom sport in Australia.

“The following for the sport here is second only to the United States,” he said.

Most major swim meets now require two Olympic-sized pools, Mr Reeves said, explaining why a second pool would be added.

“It is a now a requirement of major swim meets that there are two full size pools – one for swimmers to warm up, and the other for competition."