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Whistler Legacies Society re-launched

Whistler 2010 Sports Legacies to manage Olympic venues, operating trust funds

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Although there’s still a great deal to be decided concerning the future of Whistler’s Olympic legacies, the Whistler Legacies Society took a step forward this week by re-launching as Whistler 2010 Sport Legacies (WSL2010) and stating its goals for moving forward after 2010.

The venues managed by WSL2010 include the Whistler Sliding Centre, the Whistler Athletes’ Centre — including the high performance centre and athlete housing at Cheakamus Crossing — and Whistler Olympic Park.

Whistler’s venues are included in the Games Operating Trust endowment, with $110 million originally provided by provincial and federal governments to ensure that 2010 legacies thrive in the long term. Richmond and Whistler will split the proceeds of the fund, with 40 per cent of the interest going to each group to help cover operating costs in the future. The other 20 per cent is available for capital costs and other expenses.

“The organization’s mission will be to operate its Olympic legacy venues to advance high performance sport development and recreational sport participation in a manner that ensures economic, environmental and social sustainability,” explained Paul Shore, the marketing and business development manager for WSL2010.

For example, that includes the development of business plans that would open venues like the sliding centre to tourists, creating grassroots sports programs and support around the venues, and drawing more visitors to use the cross-country and snowshoe trails at Whistler Olympic Park. It also means continuing to attract events, ranging from local and regional competitions to World Cup.

Venue managers are also encouraged to think creatively, finding ways to generate revenues at those facilities during the summer months.

The new launch came with a website, www.whistler2010sportlegacies.com, and a new logo that arranges three images associated with Whistler’s venues into the shape of a snowflake.

The website profiles each venue, and what it has to offer each community during and after the Games. Concrete plans on how they will be used in the future are still in the works, but more details will be available closer to Games time.

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