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WLS to get millions from GOT

Business plans for legacy venues to be done by end of year

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That fund had grown from $110 million to $133.6 million as of March 2007. The organizations managing the venues after the Games will receive funding from the interest gained on the legacy fund.

According to the 2006 Auditor Generals report; “Interest earned on the trust’s assets is to be used to cover the pre-Games operating costs of the Whistler Sliding Centre, Whistler Nordic Centre, Whistler Athletes’ Centre and the Richmond Speed Skating Oval.

“After the Games, the trust’s assets will be used to cover the post-Games operating costs of the three facilities.”

Richmond hopes to break even on its venue or need only a small subsidy each year following the Games.

For the City of Richmond, said Mayor Malcolm Brodie, the trust money means a world-class venue will not be a burden to taxpayers.

“The financial support provided by the trust ensures that we will be able to provide these meaningful legacies without basing an undue hardship or burden on the taxpayers of Richmond,” he said.

Richmond, which will own the oval after the Games, is contributing $114 million to its construction out of a total budget of $178 million.

After the Games the oval will be converted to a track and field facility, two international-sized ice hockey rinks, a court area that can host up to eight basketball courts, a sports science centre, and public space.

“This will probably be the most remarkable venue of its kind in the world largely because it has been built with the future in mind,” said John Furlong, the CEO of the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Games at the event.”

Furlong said at the announcement that setting up the legacy for the facilities was part of the out-of-the-box initial planning for the Games

“I think (this is) one of the most novel and creative and innovative agreements any organizing committee has ever sat down to work on,” he said.

“The Games Trust Fund (was) essentially to make sure that the venues of 2010 Games would live on and contribute to sport in the community, sport in the province, sport across the country and around the world for generations…   That is what this fund is set up to do.

“…. (This) means that every venue we have for the Games will contribute long after the flame goes out.”

The 1988 Calgary Games left a $70.5 million legacy, which had grown to $185 in 2006. The organization that manages several facilities uses five per cent of the fund to finance its operations. Of that five per cent about $4 million a year goes to sustaining and building its legacy facilities, equipment, office and administrative support to national sport organizations, and World Cup event assistance in Southern Alberta.

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