http://www.townsvillebulletin.com.au/ar ... _news.html
HE North Queensland Cowboys have launched a bold bid for a new football stadium in the heart of Townsville's CBD.Cowboys chairman Laurence Lancini met with Sports Minister Phil Reeves yesterday ahead of last night's sold-out Cowboys v Broncos NRL clash to discuss the proposal.
The 30,000-seat stadium is expected to be built within the next five years on QR (Queensland Rail) National land fronting Flinders St West.
The land has been earmarked for a new sports stadium in Townsville City Council's CBD Masterplan.
The State Government and the council have thrown their weight behind the bid.
Mr Reeves said an official decision was still to be made as negotiations with QRN, which had no plans to stop operations at the site, were still to be held.
"Today I received a proposal from the North Queensland Cowboys for a new stadium and possible location," he said.
"Obviously, as I've only just received the proposal, it would be far too early to make any sort of judgment.
"It's my understanding that QRN, the present owners of the proposed site, have no desire to stop their operations there," Mr Reeves said.
"Since January 2004, the State Government has invested $36.3 million into Dairy Farmers Stadium."
Thuringowa MP Craig Wallace said securing the land would be the biggest hurdle.
However, once that was sorted, the stadium would be a major coup for the North.
"It would mean we were in a better position to attract things like semi-finals of the rugby league," he said.
"I would sincerely hope that one day, if we get this world-class stadium, we would get a State of Origin game played in Townsville and further rugby league Test matches."
Townsville Mayor Les Tyrell backed the bid, which could one day put Townsville in the frame to host a State of Origin match.
"We're always willing to look at those sorts of sporting events," he said.
"We've got a pretty good track record on that with the V8s, and our support for the Cowboys and Crocodiles."
Cr Tyrell said the Townsville CBD Masterplan identified South Townsville as an ideal spot for the new sporting facility.
Cowboys management was reluctant to discuss the plan until it had been developed further.