The Winter of Our Discontent

February 15, 2008 at 11:10 pm | Posted in Whitecaps Waterfront Stadium | Leave a comment

I suppose I am not one of those to become too easily discouraged, but I am growing weary of the Stadium stalemate.   It appears the plan for a new stadium has become mired in Political mud.   The Whitecaps seek a land swap with the port of Vancouver for land which currently contains a parking lot between the Helijet and Crab Park in exchange for land the Whitecaps own at the back of Gastown.   The land they wish to swap for is Federal port land.  This allows the City of Vancouver to effectively wash their hands of the issue, and leaves our fate in the hands of local federal bureaucrats who answer to their masters in the far off Capital of our vast country.    Basically, there is little scope for effective political pressure.   One of the Federal politicians who might help, Libby Davies, does not like the stadium proposal.

Our great hope is that the Whitecaps will negotiate a deal with the Port so that we can again assert political pressure to make it all happen.   Now that the Stadium is not proposed for over the railway tracks, the doomsday sayers who were claiming we would all be blown up if the Stadium were built over the tracks will switch their tactics to the “save Crab Park” option among other NIMBY arguments.  The “save Crab Park” argument is ill advised because, if anything, having the stadium next door will raise the profile and the use of Crab Park.  I would love to have a picnic at Crab Park before a soccer match for instance, or kick a ball with my nephew.

In any event, I am sure that if we get a deal with the Port the whole project will be a “go”.   Having a beautiful sporting facility with a large natural grass field where there is nothing but tarmac now is too good an opportunity for the City of Vancouver to miss. Former Mayor of Vancouver  Larry Campbell’s vision for a mid-sized sporting and event facility built by the Vancouver Whitecaps will come to fruition!!!

Once we get approval, MLS and English Premiership exhibition matches here we come!!!    Perhaps I am not so pessimistic after all…

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