Canadian Consulting Engineer

Construction industry set to profit from Winter Olympics

July 4, 2003
By Canadian Consulting Engineer

Consulting engineers and construction companies are turning their eyes west now that Vancouver has won the bid to h...

Consulting engineers and construction companies are turning their eyes west now that Vancouver has won the bid to host the 2010 Winter Olympic Games. The announcement that the Bid was successful was made to an ecstatic crowd on July 2 at GM Place, the venue that will be used for the opening and closing Olympic ceremonies. On Saturday, July 5, Premier Gordon Campbell and Canadian Heritage Minister Sheila Copps are hosting a “Countdown 2010” celebration at GM Place. The Paralympic Winter Games scheduled to take place in March 2010, a month after the main Winter Olympics, will also take place in Vancouver and Whistler.
Building a host of new Olympic venues and renovating existing ones will keep companies busy for the next seven years, with an estimated $700 million slated for construction.
The Olympic village for the 5,000 athletes is the biggest project, costing $167 million and located in the heart of Vancouver on the waterfront at False Creek. Another Olympic village will be constructed for $98 million at Whistler, the venue for some of the Alpine ski and other sliding events. The Premier has promised there will be improvements to the 120-kilometre road between Vancouver and Whistler in order to cut down the travel distance and reduce the winter driving risks.
The construction plans include a new $102 million Nordic Centre at Whistler for cross country skiing and ski jumping, new bobsleigh and luge facilities at Whistler/Blackcomb. Ice hockey will be in a renovated GM Place and figure skating in a renovated Pacific Coliseum in Hastings Park. A new $68 million speed skating oval will be built at Simon Fraser University and curling facilities are set to take place in a new Hillcrest/Nat Bailey Stadium Park. The long-awaited expansion of the Vancouver Convention Centre on the waterfront is also likely to go ahead.
An Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games “OCOG” will be set up by the fall and put
in charge of planning and operating the games. Contracts for the work are to be given in an open public tender process, with much of the early work related to design and environmental assessments. The province has compiled information to assist businesses at
The Vancouver 2010 Bid Corporation promised that sustainability would be a “cornerstone” of their Olympic developments, and mentioned green buildings, green power and fuel cell programs. Shortly before Vancouver won the Olympic bid, the Greater Vancouver Regional District won the grand prize at an international competition for urban sustainability at the World Gas Conference in Tokyo. It had competed against nine teams from metropolitan areas around the world preparing a 100-year plan towards sustainability.


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