Elsie without answers on ‘City of Sports and Shows’ venues

Lawmaker’s questions on the development of the “City of Sports and Shows” and especially on the search for adequate spaces for major outdoor events did not make much progress in the replies of the Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture, Elsie Ao Ieong, at the Legislative Assembly (AL) yesterday evening.

Lawmakers Leong Sun Iok and Ma Io Fong presented two similar inquiries to the government on this topic but the Secretary failed to respond with any real developments, continuing to say, as in the past, that the government is studying alternatives.

Leong had expressed concerns on how Macau could become an effective “City of Sports and Shows” when Macau has few spaces for these activities to take place and the land resources that could potentially fit the purpose are not being addressed by the government.

While admitting that the current and planned outdoor venues have a maximum capacity limited to as few as 7,000 people, Ao Ieong said “For events including dozens of thousands of people []we are still thinking [of outdoor venues].”

Nonetheless, she said the government is considering the use of a land plot next to the Macau Tower, one of those mentioned in the inquiry of Leong.

Ao Ieong also said that in about two weeks the government will publish the creation of a multidisciplinary team including elements of several government services and departments to coordinate the development of the “City of Sports and Shows” from different perspectives, including suitable locations and transportation.

Lawmakers Nick Lei and Ella Lei also intervened in the topic pushing the government to be more proactive and provide faster responses to the policies they create or embrace.

Ella Lei insisted on the low utilization of the Macao East Asian Games Dome in Cotai as well as land plots contiguous to this facility claiming that “noise would be less of the problem there” but the Secretary refrained from advancing any comments on such possibilities.

Zone A sports facilities will come last

The two new sports facilities planned for Zone A of the new landfills will not be rising from the ground anytime soon, the Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture, Elsie Ao Ieong, said in response to lawmaker Ma Io Fong at the AL.

The lawmaker had questioned the topic as part of his inquiry on the development of Macau as a “City of Sports and Shows.”

In response, the Secretary noted that while there are plans to build two sports facilities in plots A9 and B4 of Zone A, these facilities as well as “several cultural facilities that will be side-by-side” are included in the “last part of the development of Zone A,” she said, the construction of which is expected to start in the next few years.

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