British Columbia

BC Place gets green light for retractable roof

The B.C. government has given the green light to the operator of BC Place to start a $365-million renovation.
This is an artist's rendition of the new retractable roof of BC Place. ((PavCo))

The B.C. government has given the green light to the operator of Vancouver's BC Place to start a $365-million  renovation.

The renovation plans include a new retractable roof, extensive interior upgrades and overdue maintenance projects, according to a statement released Friday by BC Pavilion Corp.

Previous estimates have put the cost of a retractable roof alone at $200 million, but a new estimate was not released Friday.

The first $55 million of the cost will come from the province, with the rest of the cash coming from PavCo's plan to develop land around the downtown stadium with condominium and commercial properties, supplemented by existing cash reserves, more events and sponsorships, and savings resulting from the renovations.

The work will start immediately and should wrap up by 2012, although the roof will not be replaced until after the 2010 Olympics.

The indoor stadium was opened in 1983 and is operated by PavCo, which is owned by the B.C. government. In January 2007 the inflatable roof collapsed when a malfunction during a snowstorm caused a tear in the fabric.

now