Birmingham and the West Midlands will benefit from £778m investment to stage the 2022 Commonwealth Games, the government has confirmed.
The public funding, which includes contingency, will be split approximately 75% / 25% between investment from central government (£594m) and Birmingham City Council and a number of its key partners (£184m).
The games will be the biggest sporting and cultural event ever held in the city, featuring thousands of world-class athletes, over a million spectators and an estimated global TV audience of 1.5 billion people. The games are being hailed as a catalyst for the wider regeneration of Perry Barr, delivering a host of regeneration and infrastructure projects much more quickly than they would have done so otherwise.
In addition to £778m funding for staging the games, other key regeneration projects include the £496m development of 1,400 new homes at Perry Barr, which will serve as the Commonwealth Games Village during the games in 2022.
The Perry Barr development will be supported by £165m of government funding from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, as announced in October 2018. Post-Games, the development will be converted into more than 1,400 homes, the first phase of a long-term regeneration plan for Perry Barr and surrounding areas that will provide 5,000 new homes in total.
The games will also benefit from investment in transport infrastructure, including improvements at Perry Barr and University stations and new SPRINT rapid bus routes, subject to the necessary approvals. Mims Davies, minister for sport and civil society, said: “The games budget is a significant investment in Birmingham and the region that will deliver benefits to local people for years to come.”
Ian Ward, leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “The level of investment coming into the city and the wider west midlands as a result of our decision to successfully bid for the right to host the Commonwealth Games, is huge. The games are undoubtedly a catalyst, bringing forward many regeneration and infrastructure schemes, so they are delivered much quicker that we could have done so otherwise.”
Louise Martin, president of the Commonwealth Games Federation, said: “This confirmation unlocks significant investment in some inspiring infrastructure and legacy initiatives that will benefit Birmingham and the west midlands for generations to come.”
The government says that that evidence from previous host cities demonstrates the significant benefits of staging the games, with the Gold Coast 2018 games expected to have delivered a £1.3bn boost to the Queensland economy.