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The Olympic Oval in Richmond, B.C., where speedskating events will be held, will be one legacy of the Games for Metro Vancouver. ((CBC))

Canadians outside B.C. are more likely than British Columbians to believe the province and Vancouver will benefit from the Olympics, a poll conducted for CBC News suggests.

Non-residents of B.C. are also more likely to find the cost of the Olympics appropriate.

Overall, 75 per cent of Canadians surveyed outside B.C. said they thought the Olympics would have at least some benefit for Canada as a whole, the poll by the Environics Research Group found. Eighty-one per cent said the Games would benefit B.C., and 86 per cent said they'd be good for Vancouver.

Fewer people in B.C. and Vancouver agreed that the giant two-week event, which officially launches Friday night, will have positive effects.

Among the British Columbians outside Vancouver who were surveyed, 59 per cent expected at least some benefit to Canada, 63 per cent saw benefits for B.C. and 75 per cent saw benefits for Vancouver.

Among Vancouver residents, 77 per cent expect the city will derive at least some benefits from the Games.

People surveyed in Alberta (83 per cent), Manitoba and Saskatchewan (82 per cent), and Ontario (79 per cent) were the most likely to think the Olympics would have at least some benefit to Canada.

Canadians aged 18 to 29 were most likely to believe the Olympics would benefit the country as a whole, at  82 per cent, the poll indicated. There were no notable differences between men and women on this issue, Environics said.

Margin of error

The findings were based on a telephone survey conducted by Environics Research Group with a national random sample of 1,659 adults 18 years of age or older. The margin of error for a sample of this size is plus or minus 2.4 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.  The margins are larger for the regional and demographic sub-samples. The margin for B.C, with 250 people polled, is plus or minus 6.3 percentage points and in Vancouver, where 125 people were polled, the margin was plus or minus nine. Interviewing was done between Feb. 5 and Feb. 10, 2010.

Opinions split on cost

Canadians are divided over the costs of putting on the Olympics, the poll suggests.

Some 43 per cent of those surveyed said too much was being spent by the federal government, the province of B.C. and the City of Vancouver. Forty-one per cent said the right amount was being spent.

In B.C. and Vancouver, the story was different. Seven out of 10 B.C. residents (70 per cent) said too much was being spent and two-thirds (65 per cent) of Vancouver residents agreed.

Some 22 per cent of both B.C. residents and Vancouver residents said just the right amount was being spent. Quebecers indicated the most support for Olympic spending, with 56 per cent feeling that just the right amount of money was being spent on the Games.