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Copyright Graeme MacKay. Please check for MacKay's posting and publication rules by clicking here.
The Hamilton Spectator
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Monday March 1, 2010
Build for years, host for weeks, compete for seconds, coexist with the legacy -positive or negative -for decades. When a city hosts the Olympics, it signs up to live with an inheritance that lingers many times longer than the Games last in the first place. B.C. has built venues and transportation infrastructure that will last 60 years or more (as IOC president Jacques Rogge said); the question is whether the price was worth it. Vancouver taxpayers take to the starting line already $1-billion behind thanks to cost overruns and the effects of the recession on one project alone, the Olympic Village in the False Creek area. The final cost of the 2010 Games will be difficult to tally in the short term. The Post surveys the principal 2010 venues -what they cost, how they held up for the Olympics and how they're supposed to benefit B.C. in the future.

OLYMPIC VILLAGE - Cost About $1-billion
OLYMPIC/ PARALYMPIC CENTRE - Cost $39.05-million so far, $85.45-million in total
CANADA PAVILION - Cost $10-million
SEA-TO-SKY HIGHWAY - Cost $600-million
RICHMOND OVAL - Cost $178-million
WHISTLER SLIDING CENTRE - Cost $105-million
CANADA LINE (SKYTRAIN) - Cost $2.05-billion

Finally, there is that amorphous concept of social capital. The party to which everyone was invited at least to the free events may have strengthened our sense of community and reinforced the relationships that make societies more productive.

Will the Olympics boost the economy? Its probably safe to wager that GDP will be higher in the first quarter of 2010 than in the comparable period of 2009. Beyond that, were guessing.

Has the preparation for and hosting of the Games made Vancouver an even better place to live? Absolutely, yes. Read more...

Vancouver Olympics: Was it worth the cost?
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