Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Whitecaps Stadium: Waterfront Transit Hub Open Houses


As you may know, Vancouver's Friends of Soccer is represented on the City Hall advisory board on the proposed Central Waterfront Transit Hub, which directly affects transit access to the proposed Whitecaps Waterfront Stadium. This is a project that intends to combine buses, all Skytrain lines, Seabus and commuter trains in one efficient, centralized building that will be a showcase on the downtown waterfront. The hub involves land that is owned by the City, as well as the Whitecaps and several other stakeholders in the area.

The City of Vancouver will be holding open houses on the transit hub next week on:

Thursday, March 5, 3pm-7pm - Waterfront Station
Saturday, March 7, 10am-2pm, Vancouver Public Library, Central Branch

Although much of the attention these days is on the MLS bid and the renovation of BC Place, it's important to remember that the Whitecaps still intend to pursue building their own stadium on the waterfront lands they own, in conjunction with a possible land swap with the Port of Vancouver. Building a proper transit hub in the area could be an important part of any compromise that may happen regarding the stadium.

I believe it's also important for us as soccer supporters to remind City Hall that we haven't gone away, and that as long as the Whitecaps regard BC Place as a temporary solution, we do so as well. We should also send the message that it's important for any Transit Hub on the Waterfront be properly designed and equipped to handle the crowds for any stadium the Whitecaps plan to build in the future.

We may be working for the long term here...maybe even 2016. But if we're invisible at these open houses next week, or at any stage in this process, we risk hurting any chance we have when the stadium issue rises again. While I realize the transit hub isn't directly soccer related, it does impact the Whitecaps stadium for the future.

If you live in Metro Vancouver or BC, please come to the open houses. If you live outside of BC, or can't make it to the meetings, please read the material at this website:


And then please e-mail your comments in support to Matt Shilito at:


Yours in Soccer,

Bill Currie
Friends Of Soccer