- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On April 15, 2009
- 6 Comments
- BC Place, MLS Vancouver
I was just handed this link to a blog that I’ve never seen before but quickly became a fan of after a few articles. The main reason why I was lead there was due to a story on the Vancouver Whitecaps stadium situation for Major League Soccer.
Yes, there is a potential issue with BC Place and its renovations to do a retractable roof. No roof on retractable roof could really hurt this venue.
The proposed slashing of the retractable roof will additionally limit the facility as a venue for concerts and other events, according to Mayenknecht. Thus, it’s not simply the costs that need to be compared, but also the potential lost revenue. He calculates that the net difference between the original retractable roof plan and a cheap fixed roof would work out to only about $125-150 million. Yes, that’s a fair bit of money, but is it really enough to sabotage two beloved professional sports teams for?
Moreover, this is a ready-made infrastructure investment, which the NDP should be all in favour of. The plans are completed, the money’s been found, and the renovations will provide jobs in the construction community and the services sector once the new facility opens. Green and Martignago go into more detail on the matter in their post:
“PavCo estimates that the full renovation and retractable roof plan will generate $100 M in annual economic activity, cause savings in energy costs associated with a fixed air-supported roof and create more than 2,000 jobs. Government officials have reported that 300 people are already working on-site on the initial phases of the renovation.
Estimates for the economic impact of an MLS franchise playing at BC Place are in the $25 M per annum range. The BC Lions could drive $35 M to $40 M annually with the increased attendance projected from a retractable roof. The 2011 CFL Grey Cup would generate at least $75 M (based on results from the last hosting in 2005).”
So what does this mean for the Whitecaps and MLS? Could mean a tough break for soccer in Vancouver. I had my doubts about BC Place until I saw the plans for it to be come a facility similar to Commerzbank Arena in Frankfurt, Germany. Without those kinds of plans in place this facility will not work out in the long run for the club and for the league.
Its almost back to hoping the owners can get that Waterfront Stadium sooner rather than later again.