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NSW Stadiums Given All-Clear To Increase Crowd Numbers

In good news for televised sport that could spur TV sales, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has given the green light for major stadiums within the state to safely operate one-off major events at 50 per cent capacity.

Venues such as ANZ Stadium, Bankwest Stadium, and the SCG have been forced to run at 25 per cent capacity due to the COVID-19 pandemic, leading to scenes of sports teams playing to largely empty seats; however, the Premier announced today that, provided four-square-metre social distancing is enforced and audience members wear masks when going to and from their seats, this number can now be safely doubled.

“A large venue, so long as it has tickets and seats and zones and very specific caveats, is able to hold a managed and controlled event, and especially given it’s outdoors, that also reduces the risk.

“I understand that two out of the three major stadiums have already put forward their COVID-safe plans, which have existed, and the third one was submitted yesterday,” she said.

According to NSW Tourism Minister Stuart Ayres, the new cap will mean Bankwest Stadium will be able to seat 15,000 people; the SCG will be able to seat 23,000 people; and ANZ Stadium will be able to seat 40,000 people.

“For a number of months now we’ve been able to host events with thousands of people in stadiums in a safe fashion, and we’ve been able to take the evidence base that’s been developed in each and every single one of those events and apply it to this reduced restriction,” he said.

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