Friday, October 21, 2005

Whitecaps Stadium Passes first hurdle

Hey all,

The Standing Committee on Planning and Environment held its first public council meeting on the Vancouver Stadium project this afternoon. They approved the City Manager's recommendation to undertake a $164,000 consultant's report (at the Whitecaps' expense)that will be researched and written over the next 6 months, which will include a thorough public consultation process. Residents of Vancouver's downtown eastside spoke against the project for the most part. Their main concerns are the impact on their neighbourhood, lack of parks, green space and community facilities in the area, and they complained about a lack of consultation prior to the Whitecaps announcement. There were a few exceptions...some business owners spoke out in favour of the project and the study, as well as a community youth group that trains aboriginal youth in the construction trades.

As you might imagine, business leaders and Tourism Vancouver spoke out in favour. A surprise however, was a presentation by the Gastown Business Improvement Association that was in favour of the consultant's study, but neither for or against the stadium. Their major concern seems to be the additional land along the waterfront that the Whitecaps own adjacent to the proposed stadium, and they want the study to include land use issues for those parcels as well. They're worried that additional developments next to the stadium will obscure views and take away from Gastown's mystique.

What we know is this:

- Counc. Peter Ladner is rock solid in support of the Stadium- Counc. Tim Louis is extremely hostile to the Stadium.

- Both mayoral candidates Jim Green and Sam Sullivan say they're in favour.

- All the current councillors want to see the study.

If you're interested, the City of Vancouver Web Site should post the video soon. You should be able to find it at:

I'm currently forming a pro-stadium citizens group. The website can be found at

Bill Currie

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