Australians make pitch for Pattaya SEA Games 2025 stadium contract

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Mayor Sonthaya Kunplome gestures during the meeting with the Australian delegation vying for the Pattaya stadium contract.

An Australian architecture firm that designed facilities for the London Olympics pitched its services in hopes of landing a contract for a stadium for 2025 Southeast Asia Games in Pattaya.



Ed Sanderson, director of Populous Pty Ltd. and Karen Surmon, commercial diplomat for the Australian Trade and Investment Office, met with Mayor Sonthaya Kunplome Dec. 2.

Karen Surmon, commercial diplomat for the Australian Trade and Investment Office and Ed Sanderson (left), director of Populous Pty Ltd arrive at Pattaya City Hall to meet with Mayor Sonthaya Kunplome.

Populous is interested in bidding on a new stadium and facilities for the SEA Games after previously working with the Malaysian government for the 2019 Games, as well as the London Olympics.


That Pattaya is looking to a foreign design firm with world-class experience is a good sign for the 2025 SEA Games given the city’s dreadful record of building sports facilities.

Mayor Sonthaya presents Karen Surmon with a souvenir as members of both delegations pose for a group photograph.

Its white-elephant football stadium started in 2009 still is not finished and officials hope it can be completed by 2026. Meanwhile, the Pattaya Youth Sports Center built in 2006 was promptly left to degrade into a mess of muddy sunken fields and broken facilities.