The NSW State Government has dumped its controversial redevelopment of ANZ Stadium because of budgetary constraints brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian and fellow senior government ministers have agreed the $[Aus]800 million project will not proceed, instead announcing a $3 billion fund for job-creating prospects across the state.
The NSW Coalition Government had taken its stadium plan to the last election, retaining power despite the best efforts of the NSW Opposition that had run a campaign of "schools and hospitals before stadiums".
The rebuild of Allianz Stadium will continue -- the structure was demolished last year -- but ANZ Stadium will now remain in the same 82,000-seat configuration it has held since it was remodelled after the 2000 Olympics.
"Unprecedented crisis calls for an unprecedented recovery, and redirecting funding from Stadium Australia to job-creating infrastructure builds is the right thing to do for the people of NSW," Deputy Premier John Barilaro said.
The decision could impact a variety of sports in the short term with both Football Federation Australia and Rugby Australia having identified a redeveloped ANZ Stadium as the centrepiece of their respective FIFA Women's World Cup and Rugby World Cup bids.
But it could release some of the pressure on the NRL that had opted to stage its Grand Final at the SCG, refusing a pitch from the Queensland Government to bring the match to Brisbane's Suncorp Stadium.
The NSW Government's backflip could allow the NRL to switch the Grand Final back to ANZ Stadium for the next two years, instead of the unpopular SCG.