Upgrades Foreseen at the QSAC in Nathan for the 2032 Olympics

Queensland intends to transform the Queensland Sport and Athletics Centre (QSAC) in Nathan into the main stadium for the 2032 Olympic Games. This decision marks a significant change in direction, sidelining the proposed redevelopment of The Gabba and a new stadium at Victoria Park, despite recommendations for these venues. 

Instead, QSAC, a legacy of the 1982 Commonwealth Games, could undergo a comprehensive $1.6 billion upgrade, heralding a new era for the historic site and its surrounding community.

Background and Controversy

After a $450,000 taxpayer-funded review of the Olympic venues led by former Brisbane Lord Mayor Graham Quirk advocated for a new stadium at Victoria Park, Premier Steven Miles announced the cabinet’s endorsement for QSAC’s redevelopment. This comes despite the review’s critique of QSAC’s suitability due to transport challenges and limited legacy benefits.

“QSAC Stadium should not be used as an Olympic and Paralympic Games venue to host the track and field events,” Mr Quirk’s panel recommended. 

“Transport and access to the QSAC Stadium during the Games will be extremely challenging and costly to facilitate.

“Site topography makes this challenge even harder, noting significant Games operational requirements to safely support the number of spectators, athletes and officials.

“Griffith University would need to be used for bus access, so bushland would need to be cleared and the pathway to the QSAC Stadium widened,” the panel’s findings further cited.

Financial Implications and Alternatives

The decision to invest $1.6 billion in QSAC, defying the independent review’s suggestions, has sparked debate. 

With an initial budget to overhaul QSAC and additional funds allocated for Suncorp Stadium and the Gabba upgrades, questions about fiscal responsibility and the best use of public resources have emerged.

Consequently, rejecting a new $3.4 billion Victoria Park stadium highlights the prioritisation of existing infrastructure over new constructions.

A New Vision for QSAC

The proposed redevelopment involves demolishing and rebuilding significant portions of QSAC, including constructing an 8,000-seat western grandstand and additional permanent seating. This plan aims to elevate QSAC to Olympic standards whilst considering the site’s challenging topography and access issues. 

The ultimate goal is a versatile 14,000-capacity stadium that serves both the Olympics and the community post-Games.

Griffith University, located next door to the QSAC, endorses investigating the upgrades.

“Brisbane has benefitted vastly from the facility since it opened in time for the Commonwealth Games in 1982,” Griffith Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Carolyn Evans said in a statement

QSAC Commonwealth Games in the 1980s
Commonwealth Games 1982
Photo Credit: QSAC/Facebook

“It has been home to major sporting fixtures and teams and as a venue for international musical acts such as Madonna and Billy Joel.

“The uses for QSAC will only grow as we approach the Olympics and well after they are finished.

“Additionally, improved transport connections to the area will benefit many thousands of people living in Brisbane’s southern suburbs.”

The decision to focus on QSAC for the 2032 Olympics represents a bold commitment to utilising existing infrastructure, fostering community legacy, and managing financial resources wisely. Whilst the move has its critics, particularly concerning the review’s recommendations, it sets the stage for an Olympic transformation that could redefine Brisbane and its approach to major sporting events.

Published 19-March-2024

Mt Gravatt’s Lovewell Foundation Receives Prestigious Future2 Grant

Lauded for its efforts to provide a lifeline to women who have faced a spectrum of challenges such as domestic violence, addiction, and mental health issues, the Lovewell Foundation in Mt Gravatt has been recognised for its outstanding work with a significant grant from the Future2 Foundation.

The Lovewell Foundation stands among 15 other recipients, each playing a crucial role in their respective communities.

The foundation’s Better Futures program, deeply rooted in Mt Gravatt, has become a symbol of resilience and renewal, providing much-needed support to women from diverse and challenging backgrounds.

Empowerment Through Support

The grant awarded to the Lovewell Foundation marks a pivotal moment, allowing the organisation to extend its reach to an additional 50 to 60 women.

Annie Stonehouse from the Lovewell Foundation expressed her gratitude and excitement for the opportunity to expand their transformative program. 

“In 2024, thanks to the Future 2 generous grant, we are excited to be able to extend our reach and assist another 50-60 remarkable women in embarking on their journey towards Better Futures,” she said. “Working with Future 2, we get to walk this inspiring journey with inspiring women whose potential is not just realized but celebrated as they develop a Better Future for themselves and their children.”

This grant not only acknowledges the foundation’s past efforts but also lays the groundwork for future endeavours, further solidifying their role in empowering women to overcome adversity and build brighter futures.

A Collective Effort for a Better Tomorrow

The Future2 Foundation, known for its unwavering commitment to addressing social, financial, and physical hardships across Australia, has awarded $148,500 in grants to various recipients through its annual Make the Difference program.

Supporting a myriad of causes from mental health initiatives to youth empowerment programs, these grants represent a beacon of hope and a step towards a more inclusive and supportive society.

The Future2 Foundation’s Make the Difference program, in partnership with strategic supporters like AIA Australia and Tangelo Advice Consulting, is more than just a funding initiative.

This year’s program saw an unprecedented number of over 100 applications, reflecting the growing need for community-based support and intervention.

As these programs continue to grow and impact lives, they remind us of the inherent strength and resilience within our communities, particularly in places like Mt Gravatt, where organisations like the Lovewell Foundation are making a real difference.

For more details, follow the Lovewell Foundation on Facebook.

Published 19-Nov-2023

Mt Gravatt Widow Reunited with Husband’s Ashes After Heartless Theft

Nada French, an elderly Mt Gravatt widow, faced the unimaginable when thieves broke into her home. Utilising a crowbar to gain access, the culprits not only took valuable items including her engagement and eternity rings, but also a blue plastic container holding a priceless treasure: the ashes of her late husband, Neal French.

Mrs French, 87, had hoped to be interred alongside her husband of 60 years in the family plot at Nudgee Cemetery. Her daughter, Joan Hyams, expressed the family’s profound distress, likening the theft to “losing dad twice,” as Mr French’s memory was profoundly cherished by the family since his passing in 2016.

A Community’s Response and a Sudden Turn

In response to this despicable act, the family issued a public plea, which was amplified by local media coverage. The family’s appeal and the subsequent media attention resulted in a surprising turn of events.

Miraculously, Neal’s ashes were found abandoned on the steps of the Anglican Church of the Annunciation in Camp Hill. A member of the church’s gardening club, upon recognizing the significance of the container from the news, played a crucial role in their safe return. The police promptly returned the ashes to Mrs French, who was overwhelmed with relief and gratitude.

The return of the ashes brought immense solace to the family. Ms Hyams expressed her joy, stating that her father was back, “where he belongs.” 

Mt Gravatt Widow
Photo Credit: A Current Affair/YouTube

The fact that the ashes were found at a church resonated deeply with the family, considering Mr French’s devout faith. The family’s ordeal, whilst harrowing, ended with a sense of peace and closure, as they could once again fulfil Mr French’s wish to be laid to rest alongside his beloved wife.

The Aftermath and Security Concerns

Despite the happy conclusion, the theft incident, which happened on 9 Nov 2023, left a lasting impact on the Mt Gravatt widow. The burglary, occurring in broad daylight, shattered her sense of security. The family is now considering measures to enhance the security of their home, with Mrs French’s son taking an active role in this endeavour.

The incident has highlighted the importance of community vigilance and support. The family expressed their heartfelt thanks to the police and the church community for their roles in the return of their beloved’s ashes.

Meanwhile, the police are appealing for information regarding the theft. Send a tip to Policelink. 

Published 15-Nov-2023

‘Dumb Money’ Hits Mt Gravatt Cinema

It’s a David vs Goliath story you couldn’t make up. But it’s true. “Dumb Money” launches on October 26 at Event Cinemas Mt Gravatt and it’s fantastic.

The story hit the news headlines in 2021 when Wall Street was smashed by a group of short-sellers of the stock, Gamestop. They had joined together through the social media site, Reddit, to form a short squeeze3 that at the time felt like a seismic earthquake to the world stock markets.

Paul Dano plays a lead role as Keith Gill, one of the instigators of the Gamestop position. Pete Davidson, Vincent D’Onofrio and America Ferrera along with Seth Rogen deliver great character performances in the movie based on a book called “The Antisocial Network” by Ben Mezrich. (Mezrich also wrote the book that was adapted into the movie “The Social Network”)

The story focuses on a few of the Reddit protagonists and how their lives were impacted by the adventure that unfolded, with some good comedic elements.

Superbly directed by Craig Gillespie, “Dumb Money” gets an 83% review from the movie website Rotten Tomatoes.

Westfield Mt Gravatt Transforms into Festival Wonderland With Silent Discos, Basketball Workshops

Silent discos, where people can groove to the beat wearing wireless headphones. Basketball workshops with the Southwest Metro Pirates. Check out what’s coming up at Westfield Mt Gravatt.

Silent Discos: Groove to Your Own Rhythm

From Monday to Sunday, 18 to 23 Sept 2023, Westfield Mt Gravatt will be abuzz with excitement as it becomes a part of Brisbane Festival 2023 and presents an extraordinary event called Silent Discos. This is a unique and immersive musical experience for attendees of all ages so everyone is invited to move to their own rhythm at the Town Square dining precinct, near the Hotel Beach House.

Here’s what the event has in store:

Musical Magic: Participants can groove to the hottest tunes while wearing wireless headphones, creating a surreal musical atmosphere. It’s a fantastic way to dance to your favorite tracks without disturbing others.

Laser Light Show: Get ready to be dazzled by laser lighting effects that will transform the Town Square into a mesmerizing dance floor.

Interactive Games: Alongside dancing, attendees can enjoy various interactive games, adding an element of excitement and competition to the event.

The Silent Discos bring not just musical enjoyment but also a fantastic opportunity for families to come together, dance, and have fun in a unique way. It’s an event that encourages self-expression and celebrates the joy of music.

Basketball Workshops: Take Your Skills to the Next Level

Then from Monday to Friday 25 to 29 Sept 2023, Westfield Mt Gravatt will host Basketball Workshops, taking family fun to the next level. Families are invited to learn from the best and elevate their basketball skills.

Key details of the Basketball Workshops:

Hosted by Professionals: The workshops will be led by professionals from the Southwest Metro Pirates, providing participants with top-notch training and insights into the world of basketball.

Ultimate Training Program: These workshops are designed to help attendees take their basketball skills to the next level. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned player, there’s something for everyone to learn and enjoy.

Enjoy a memorable week of fun, entertainment, and skill development at Westfield Mt Gravatt and make this school holidays a blast for the entire family.

Published 14-Sept-2023

Mt Gravatt Schools Join Statewide Strike Amidst Negotiation Dispute

Preparations for a statewide strike are underway, with educational institutions such as Seton College in Mt Gravatt East and St Bernard’s School in Upper Mt Gravatt joining forces with over 100 other Catholic schools across Queensland. 

The impending strike, driven by concerns over work conditions and compensation, is garnering attention as the Independent Education Union – Queensland and Northern Territory (IEU-QNT) and the Queensland Catholic Education Commission (QCEC) find themselves in a negotiation dispute.

With an estimated 4,000 staff members from these Catholic schools expected to participate, the walkout is scheduled for one hour on 23 Aug 2023. This coordinated effort seeks to address issues surrounding increased workloads, proper recognition for school officers and ancillary staff, and equitable wage increments.

Mt Gravatt St Bernard
Photo Credit: Google Maps

Highlighting that the decision to strike is a last resort after failed negotiations, Terry Burke, the Secretary of IEU-QNT, emphasizes the goal of urging Catholic school employers to reconsider their stance and return to negotiations with comprehensive solutions for employee concerns.

However, a spokesperson from QCEC recently stated that during a Fair Work Commission conference on 15 July 2023, union representatives collectively agreed that formal negotiations had concluded.

Adding complexity to the situation is an upcoming staff vote on the current Enterprise Bargaining Agreement (EBA) offer. The QCEC spokesperson reveals that employees are eager to accept the presented benefits without delay, leading to plans for an employee vote in early September.

Educators, students, parents, and the broader community are closely watching this significant event, recognising its potential to reshape the education landscape in Queensland.

Published 21-Aug-2023

New Sephora Store Coming Soon to Westfield Mt Gravatt

International beauty brand Sephora is continuing its Australian expansion, announcing it will open its latest Queensland store at Westfield Mt Gravatt.

Read: Now Open: The Gift Shop Relaunches as Deli Dakota

Sephora has seen great success domestically, rapidly growing its national footprint in major cities across the country.

The new outlet, which will open on August 31 on level 1 of the shopping centre, will be the brand’s sixth in Queensland, since entering the Australian market with its first Sydney store back in 2014. 

Photo credit: Westfield Mt Gravatt/Facebook

The Mt Gravatt opening marks the next step in Sephora’s Queensland growth strategy, following Chermside, Indooroopilly, Pacific Fair, Robina and Carindale. The new store will bring Sephora’s luxurious cosmetics and skincare products to south-east Brisbane.

Photo credit: Sephora/Facebook

Founded in 1969, Sephora has grown into an international beauty powerhouse with a devoted global following. The French brand offers an unrivalled selection of exclusive, high-end beauty labels.

Sephora’s extensive product range features coveted names like FENTY BEAUTY by Rihanna and Huda Beauty, along with beloved favourites such as tarte and Fresh. Customers can explore makeup, skincare, haircare and wellness essentials from both niche brands and leading makers.

By curating the most sought-after and buzzworthy products in one exceptional shopping experience, Sephora has become the go-to destination for beauty enthusiasts seeking the latest and greatest items on the market.

Grand Opening

Photo credit: Westfield Mt Gravatt/Google Maps

To celebrate the launch, Sephora has planned a day of festivities on August 31 including free gifts, live music, makeup tutorials and more. The event is tipped to attract crowds of makeup aficionados and those curious to explore Sephora’s extensive product range.

Read: Mt Gravatt Tesla Store Opens as 3rd Queensland Location

For Sephora fans, August 31st can’t come soon enough. The new Mt Gravatt store is set to satisfy Brisbane’s growing appetite for innovative beauty products and services.

Published 18-August-2023

Helping Your Child Get Better At Problem Solving

Over the years, I have met with countless students who at first believed they were ‘no good at maths’.  Imagine their delight when we helped them discover their inner ‘problem solver’.

Many would describe maths as ‘logical, black and white, right or wrong’; for there can only ever be one correct answer. While this may be true, there can often be several ways to solve the same problem, suggesting that mathematics is perhaps a far more creative endeavour than we have previously given it credit for. 

The ability to solve problems, mathematical or otherwise, often requires us to think outside the box, to be original and to identify a way forward that others may not have considered.

It engages a creativity that is often not normally associated with the logic inherent in finding a solution, particularly as it applies to numbers.

However, some would argue that Mathematical problem solving is in the same realm as writing music or playing an instrument, in that while it is bound by laws and limitations, it is also a natural expression of our mind’s unique and infinite capacity to form patterns and ideas.

Everyone of us is a problem solver, in a multitude of ways and in a vast array of daily contexts. 

When children see themselves as problems solvers and see maths as a way to ‘create’ solutions, it can help to break down the barriers that prevent them from trying in the first place.

Problem solving involves three key things:

  1. What is the problem asking for? i.e. be sure to identify the unit of measurement and record this near the bottom of the working out page before you have even done the calculations.
  2. What operation/ operations will be required? i.e. look for language in the text that indicates whether you will be adding, or dividing and think of a reasonable estimate.
  3. What strategy is going to be most efficient?

When it comes to Problem Solving of more complex worded problems, it is important that children are adept at using a range of strategies, as it will enable them to discern what will be the best approach to use for any given problem.

For example, if a problem involves finding the area of a compound shape, ‘drawing a picture’ and writing measurements as described, will allow the child to visually understand the task and keep track of each step.

In another instance, it may be more efficient to ‘work backwards’ and in another, perhaps a ‘guess and check’ approach.

Below is a list of effective Problem Solving strategies that you and your child can explore when presented with a mathematical problem.

1. Read the problem aloud – By reading the problem aloud, they can help to clarify any confusion and better understand what’s being asked. 

2. Summarise the information – Using dot points or a short sentence, list out all the information given in the problem. 

3. Create a picture or diagram – By drawing a picture, can better understand what’s being asked and identify any information that’s missing. 

4. Act it out – It can enable students to see the problem in a different way and develop a more intuitive understanding of it. 

5. Use keyword analysis – Keyword analysis involves asking questions about the words in a problem in order to work out what needs to be done. 

6. Look for a pattern – This could be a number, a shape pattern or even just a general trend that you can see in the information given. 

7. Guess and check – Simply make a guess at the answer and then check to see if it works. If it doesn’t, you make another systematic guess and keep going until you find a solution that works.

8. Working backwards – Regressive reasoning, or working backwards, involves starting with a potential answer and working your way back to figure out how you would get there. 

9. Use a formula – There will be some problems where a specific formula needs to be used in order to solve it. 

10. Use direct reasoning – By breaking the problem down into smaller chunks, you can start to see how the different pieces fit together and eventually work out a solution.

12. Solve a simpler problem – Or if you’re struggling with the addition of algebraic fractions, go back to solving regular fraction addition first. 

Published 22-July-2023

Griffith University Housing Complex Ditched Despite $2-Million Preparatory Construction

In a surprising turn of events, the plan to convert an unused student housing complex at Griffith University in Mt Gravatt into crisis accommodations has been abandoned.

Despite spending $2 million for its preparatory works, concerns have been raised about the area’s fire safety standards because it is close to bushland, hence the decision to discontinue the project.

The abandoned initiative at Griffith University was part of the government’s efforts to address the state’s pressing crisis. However, detailed assessments revealed that significant renovations would be necessary to bring the vacant student accommodation up to current fire safety standards. With this in mind, the decision was made to explore alternative options.

Instead, Deputy Premier and Planning Minister Steven Miles confirmed that the State Government secured a deal to purchase 64 properties across the state, which will be transformed into housing. 

“After consulting with Queensland’s leading housing advocacy group, QShelter, we’ve made the decision to purchase homes directly on the private market to get more people into accommodation quicker,” Mr Miles said.

“We haven’t taken this decision lightly. Many Queenslanders who have never experienced housing stress before are struggling, and we are committed to doing as much as we can,” he added.

The Queensland Government plans to invest $25 million to acquire existing houses and units from various locations throughout the state.

By utilising funds originally earmarked for repurposing the disused student accommodation, the government aims to expedite the process of providing housing for vulnerable individuals and families.

“The allocation of funding to purchase housing directly makes more sense given the challenges presented by the Mt Gravatt site,” Fiona Caniglia, the Executive Director of QShelter, expressed support for the shift in strategy. 

“We support any action which achieves homes for Queenslanders faster. In the longer term, this funding will go further and achieve sustainable housing outcomes for as long as people need them. QShelter will be working with the government to ensure that not-for-profit community housing providers assist in any way possible to implement this plan.”

The Department of Communities, Housing, and Digital Economy is already in the process of progressing property purchases in several suburbs across Queensland, including Acacia Ridge, Annerley, Atherton, Bucasia, Cloncurry, Cooran, Eagleby, Emerald, Gladstone Central, Gleneagle, Gordonvale, Griffin, Kawungan, Mount Low, Ormeau, Pimpama, Rural View, Smithfield, Tully, and Urangan.

Published 22-June-2023

Mt Gravatt Street Food to Host a Sizzling Brazilian Night

Get ready for a night of sizzling excitement and cultural diversity as Mt Gravatt Street Food mounts an electrifying Brazilian Night!

On Saturday, the 6th of May 2023, the festival will transport you straight to the streets of Rio with its tantalizing mix of Brazilian cuisine, live music, and dance performances.

The doors of the Mt Gravatt Showground will open to the public starting at 4:00 p.m. for an evening filled with tasty food, delicious drinks, and amazing entertainment. Brazilian Night promises a thrilling mix of samba rhythms and Brazilian beats that are sure to get your body moving.

With a wide range of foods and beverages to satisfy every taste, Mt Gravatt Street Food has something for everyone. The event will include a fantastic bar with wines, spirits, beers, and cocktails so you can relax and take in the performance while enjoying your own beverage.

Mt Gravatt Street Food Brazilian Nights
Photo Credit: Mt Gravatt Street Food/Facebook

The entertainment lineup includes an incredible array of performers, such as Lucia Band, who will grace the stage three times during the night with their electrifying sound. In addition, Dance Class Gianne Abbott will showcase their moves along with Batucada Samba Vibes, adding to the high-energy atmosphere.

But the fun doesn’t stop there! Throughout the night, Batucada Lights Samba Vibes and Dancers will rove around the venue, bringing the carnival to life right before your eyes.

So round up your loved ones and make plans to attend the food festival for a night of delectable cuisine, tempting drinks, and nonstop entertainment. Mark your calendars and get ready to party like a Brazilian. The event is sure to be a once-in-a-lifetime experience!

Published 3-May-2023