Vancouver 2010 sport venues completed on time and within $580-million budget

    Vancouver Olympic/Paralympic Centre opens today as a model of sustainable

    VANCOUVER, Feb. 19 /CNW/ - One of the biggest milestones in preparing to
host the top athletes from countries around the world has been reached by the
Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter
Games (VANOC) and its partners: construction and upgrades on all sport
competition venues were completed on time and within the $580-million budget.
Athletes are now training and competing in the venues in preparation for the
    The Vancouver 2010 sport venue program is officially complete today with
the opening of the Vancouver Olympic/Paralympic Centre, the venue for curling
and wheelchair curling events during the Games.
    "Today is a proud moment for all of us and would not have been possible
without the unwavering support of the Government of Canada and the Province of
BC," said John Furlong, VANOC Chief Executive Officer. "After years of
teamwork and careful planning, together we've reached one of our biggest
milestones. It's wonderful to see athletes now competing and testing these
venues while youngsters and adults alike experience the legacies far in
advance of the Games."
    New sport competition venues for the 2010 Winter Games include the
Richmond Olympic Oval, The Whistler Sliding Centre, University of British
Columbia Thunderbird Arena, Whistler Olympic/Paralympic Park, Cypress
Mountain, and the Vancouver Olympic/Paralympic Centre - one of the greenest
curling venues in the world. Substantial upgrades were also made to existing
facilities such as the Pacific Coliseum and Whistler Creekside. All the
facilities and upgrades were planned to leave lasting legacies in their
communities. Further enhancements will continue to be made to some venues
after VANOC receives feedback from athletes and officials competing at them
during sport events this season.
    "We want to congratulate our venue partners, the venue construction teams
and all of the workers from here and across the country for making the
construction of these venues their own Olympic and Paralympic Games," said Dan
Doyle, VANOC executive vice-president, venue construction. "Their outstanding
work will showcase to the world the best in Canadian construction and
sustainability and what can be done when partners come together with a common
    The final sport venue to be completed, the Vancouver Olympic/Paralympic
Centre will be in the international spotlight this Saturday when its ice
sheets get a workout from the men and women competing in the World Wheelchair
Curling Championships, which run until February 28. The centre will host
another major event, the World Junior Curling Championships, from March 5 to
March 15.
    Six thousand spectators can watch the rocks curl and twist at the venue,
the largest seating capacity for wheelchair curling in Paralympic Winter Games
    The Government of Canada and province of British Columbia contributed
$40.25 million to the centre via VANOC. The curling venue is perched on one of
the highest point of land in the city, with views of downtown's glass towers
and the snow-capped peaks of the North Shore mountains. Construction started
in February 2007 - the last competition venue for the Games to break ground.
    The Vancouver Olympic/Paralympic Centre is targeted for the gold standard
in Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system.
    This eco-friendly venue captures rainwater and siphons it into the
building to flush toilets and urinals. The toilets, showers and sinks also use
low-flow water systems, reducing water usage by up to 30 per cent. The
building is wrapped in a high-performance envelope that helps keep
temperatures just right inside for the perfect ice sheet. Heat is reused
during the ice-making process and the building is powered by a mixture of
electricity, natural gas and solar energy.
    After the Games, the venue will transform into a multi-purpose recreation
centre. It will include ice sheets for hockey and curling, a gymnasium,
library, and aquatic centre. The site is jointly managed by the city and the
Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation.

    About VANOC

    VANOC is responsible for the planning, organizing, financing and staging
of the XXI Olympic Winter Games and the X Paralympic Winter Games in 2010. The
2010 Olympic Winter Games will be staged in Vancouver and Whistler from
February 12 to 28, 2010. Vancouver and Whistler will host the Paralympic
Winter Games from March 12 to 21, 2010. Visit

For further information:

For further information: Media contact: Greg Alexis, VANOC
Communications, Tel: (604) 403-1627, E-mail:

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