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By Editor in on 29 May 2008
AFL chief executive Andrew Demetriou will use a rare face-to-face encounter with Queensland Premier Anna Bligh in Sydney to pitch a plan to build a new stadium at Nerang.
The AFL's expansion plans have been undermined by its failure to win a stadium deal - but Gold Coast City Council has tabled a viable solution with an offer to swap Carrara Stadium with Coast-based finance company City Pacific for land it owns near Nerang railway station.
It is understood the AFL will build a new boutique stadium on the site if it can secure a downgrade on the contentious 2015 contract from the Queensland Government.
The Government holds all the cards because the AFL entered into a contract that tied any team based in southeast Queensland to the Gabba until 2015 to ensure the government-funded Gabba redevelopment was completed.
But it is understood there is a willingness from both parties to come to a compromise that could see the Gabba deal extended, probably to 2020, in exchange for a loosening of the restrictions so the Coast could play at least half its home games at the new purpose-built stadium in Nerang.
Estimates obtained by The Courier-Mail reveal that it would cost $10 million just to tear down the existing sub-standard facilities at Carrara Stadium before work could start on the new structure.
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