Australia's Olympic Stadium will be demolished and rebuilt as part of a mulitibillion overhaul of sports grounds in New South Wales (NSW).
The ground that held the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2000 Sydney Olympics will be part of a controversial A$2.3bn (£1.3bn; $1.8bn) revamp of three stadiums in the south eastern Australian state.
The NSW state government today (23 November) voted to develop the ANZ Stadium, the current name of the Olympic venue, rebuilding it in 2019 as a 80,000-seat stadium, possibly with a retractable roof.
Supporters of the plan, which has been the subject of bitter discussion for 18 months, say the arena will be a "true rectangular" stadium, better suited to popular local sports such as rugby league and football. The stadium can currently be converted between oval and rectangular configurations, to suit sporting and musical events.
The wide-ranging plan will also see the Sydney Football Stadium rebuilt between 2018 and 2019 as a 45,000 arena, and the reconstruction of a third venue, Parramatta Stadium, which has already been demolished.
The overall price tag for the work on all three stadiuns is already 44% higher than when the plan was first proposed as a A$1.6bn project in 2015.
Critics also question if a venue completed in 1999 needs to be completely rebuilt less than 20 years later.
NSW Labor opposition leader Luke Foley told the Australian: "I can't and won't support spending $2.5bn on a couple of sporting stadiums when there's 100,000 school kids being taught in demountable [temporary] classrooms. Labor will put schools and hospitals before stadiums."