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Brighton Homes Arena opens as Lions host AFLW Grand Final

28 November 2022

The $82.1 million Brighton Homes Arena that includes a high-performance training centre has officially opened to the public at Springfield on Sunday 27 November, as the Lions went down in the AFLW Grand Final against Melbourne.

A packed crowd had the unique chance to be part of history with the opening of Australia’s first ever purpose-built stadium designed for a professional female sports team, with elite training facilities for both professional men’s and women’s teams.

The Lions lost in a nail-biting battle with hometown hero, Shannon Campbell, named best on ground.

The Brisbane Lions staff and AFLW team have already moved into the facility while the Lions men’s team will join them after they come back from leave on 5 December to make Springfield their full-time training headquarters.

There is a 50-metre indoor training field and kick room, gymnasium, infrared saunas, float tanks, lap pool, aquatic recovery pools, same-sized standalone male and female change rooms, an events lawn, administration centre and auditorium.

The stadium is the first completed Olympic venue since the Brisbane 2032 announcement, with the Arena earmarked as a potential host for modern pentathlon during the Games.

The venue will improve development pathways for junior footballers from across southern Queensland including Lions Academy boys and girls while helping the Brisbane Lions AFL and AFLW athletes to reach their full potential.

There are currently more than 111,000 women and girls who participate in AFL in Queensland – 42 per cent of all players, which is the largest proportion in Australia.

Brighton Homes Arena was designed by local architects Populous and built by Hutchinson Builders, supporting more than 260 jobs during construction, plus ongoing jobs for catering, maintenance and administrative staff.

The stadium can be used for AFL Queensland finals, representative matches and school programs across two ovals – with the main stadium overlooking Michael Voss oval, named after the Lions’ triple Premiership winning captain.

The stadium can potentially be used for Lions men’s games during the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup and while the Gabba is being redeveloped for Brisbane 2032, as the capacity can be expanded to 25,000 with temporary seating added.

The community-use facilities will provide an extra revenue stream for the Lions, while the Arena will be a drawcard for more carnivals, matches and events, providing an economic boost for the region.

Brighton Homes Arena was funded by the Queensland Government ($18 million), Federal Government, AFL and Brisbane Lions, Ipswich City Council (including developer contribution and in-kind fit-for-purpose bulk earthworks), and commercial partners Gym JV.

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