Optus Stadium ready to greet fans back



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Optus Stadium July 2020 update Image: Optus Stadium

Optus Stadium in Perth, Australia, is all geared up to welcome Australian Football League (AFL) fans back to its fold this week with two matches to be held with the facility operating at half capacity.

Optus Stadium is a multiuse world-class venue, hosting a year-round calendar of major national and international sporting and entertainment events and sits in Western Australia. It was completed in late 2017 and officially opened on January 21, 2018.

The Australian Football League (AFL) is the pre-eminent and only fully professional men’s competition of Australian rules football. Through the AFL Commission, the AFL also serves as the sport’s governing body, and is responsible for controlling the laws of the game.

Simon Gorr, Head of Infrastructure, AFL, Australia, is a Member of Coliseum – Global Sports Venue Alliance.

The stadium is expecting to greet 30,000 spectators for Thursday night’s clash between Geelong and Collingwood and Sunday’s derby game between Fremantle and West Coast.

A crowd of up to 30,633 will be the biggest turnout in Western Australia since the fatal COVID-19 broke out worldwide. Fans will be closely monitored.

Hand sanitizing facilities have been placed across the arena, payments will be contactless and extra cleaning will be carried out on event days to keep the venue totally disinfected.

More than 1,400 casual staff, security and cleaners all of whom have undertaken hygiene training, will work at the venue across the two games.

Detailing the safety measures being undertaken, Optus Stadium Chief Executive, Mike McKenna advised, “We have undertaken a deep clean of retail and premium product spaces, installation of sanitizing stations, sanitizing of all equipment and areas, upgrades to stadium security and CCTV systems and decommissioning and now recommissioning of all electrical equipment and infrastructure that had meant big savings in utility consumption.”

“Football is a major avenue for the people of Western Australia to connect with family and friends, it’s a key component of our community and culture and an opportunity for outdoor social activity and engagement,” McKenna further maintained.

Western Australian Transport Minister Rita Saffioti informed that additional trains and buses will ply on before and after the games with capped capacity on each service.

Minister Saffioti explained, “(Public Transport Authority) staff will be monitoring the loading of passengers at the stadium, to ensure there is sufficient space on our services. However, we expect it may take longer to clear the stadium so we ask all football fans to be patient.”

“Crews will be cleaning buses and trains before and during the game, as well as additional cleaning services taking place at Stadium Station,” the Minister further informed.

The Western Australian Government had been planning to move into phase five of its recovery plan on Saturday, allowing a 60,000-capacity crowd to attend the Fremantle vs. West Coast clash.

However, due to latest outbreak of COVID-19 cases in Victoria which has caused a lot of concern, this date has been tentatively pushed back to August 1.

Other big events this week include Wednesday’s West Coast Fever netball clash at RAC Arena and the WA Unlocked concert at HBF Stadium – both tournaments in the Western Australia stadia – on Saturday.

Thursday’s clash between Geelong and Collingwood will be the first in Perth featuring two non-local teams.

The Queen + Adam Lambert concert on February 23rd was the venue’s last event.

Queen + Adam Lambert are collaboration between the active members of the British band Queen and American vocalist Adam Lambert.

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