Monday, 24 September, 2018

Canada bangs the drum for United 2026 bid, committing cities and cash

BC Place played host to the final of the FIFA Women's World Cup in 2015 Canada bangs the drum for United 2026 bid, committing cities and cash
Shannon Reynolds | 15 March, 2018, 03:28

Lisa Beare, British Columbia's minister of tourism, arts and culture, said the province and bid committee "couldn't agree to terms that would put British Columbians at risk of shouldering potentially huge and unpredictable costs'". Their bid books go to Federation Internationale de Football Association at the end of the week with a decision to be made June 13 at the Federation Internationale de Football Association congress.

This comes after the province raised concerns about cost, and after its requests for clarification were rejected by the committee.

Expanded FIFA World Cup could include games in Vancouver. It's expected Canada would host 10 games, likely at two cities, if the bid was successful.

The official deadline for the 2026 World Cup bid - jointly submitted by Canada, the United States and Mexico - is March 16, and Vancouver was short-listed as a host city a year ago, along with Edmonton, Toronto and Montreal.

"Throughout this process, we have been in regular contact with the bid committee and other levels of government to support this bid, while protecting taxpayers", Beare said.

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Sportsnet 650 has confirmed Vancouver will not be a host city of the FIFA World Cup in 2026.

The City of Vancouver signed off on being part of the bid in January. "Vancouver remains a city with an exceptional sports hosting history and we look forward to working with the province and our Sport Hosting Vancouver team to identify future worldwide sporting events that bring positive economic and cultural impact to Vancouver".

"I'm hopeful that we're going to see the BC government and federal come to an arrangement that works", Robertson adds.

Collens' presentation was followed by a few words from Lenarduzzi, who successfully urged council to support the bid, saying "I don't want to downplay our importance as Canadians and as Vancouverites, but this opportunity is not coming along again".

But B.C. Liberal MLA Jas Johal alleged in question period that an internal deadline to be part of the bid passed on Monday - something which Beare would neither confirm or deny. Held in six cities and provinces from coast to coast across Canada, 1.35 million spectators attended the last women's World Cup - a record for the event - with an economic impact of almost a half-a-billion dollars.

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