Tourism Minister Lisa Beare (Hansard TV)

B.C. dropped from North America bid for World Cup soccer

Security, B.C. Place upgrade costs unknown, Tourism Minister Lisa Beare says

B.C. has been dropped from the Canada-U.S.-Mexico bid for the 2026 World Cup of soccer, after refusing to sign on to unknown costs.

Tourism Minister Lisa Beare confirmed Wednesday that B.C.’s application to include Vancouver in the bid was rejected, because the costs to the province could have been increased at any time. In particular there were “very serious concerns” about the agreement to use B.C. Place stadium to host games, including unknown security and renovation costs.

The bid committee wanted to give FIFA [the World Cup governing body] the ability to “unilaterally change the stadium agreement at any point,” Beare said. “We’re looking at possible stadium upgrade costs, the turf field that has to be in place. None of these concerns were addressed by the bid committee.”

North America is competing with Morocco to host the 2026 tournament, one of the biggest sporting events in the world.

B.C. Liberal MLA Jas Johal said it’s a setback for tourism that B.C. is the only province that couldn’t make a deal for the three-country bid.

“The former government worked hard with the City of Vancouver, sports organizations and the tourism sector to realize this opportunity,” Johal said. “British Columbians, who will now have to reserve a spot on the sofa instead of the stadium, deserve to know why the B.C. NDP bailed on a chance to market British Columbia to the world.”

Just Posted

Victoria Police investigate stabbing in restaurant on Douglas Street

Police were called to the 800-block around 1:30 p.m.

‘Fix Canada First’ posters found at Victoria bus stops

At least five posters found along Douglas Street

Oak Bay teen targets 1,000 toys

Toy drive for Stan Hagen Centre For Families is Dec. 15 and 16 on Oak Bay Avenue

Saanich residents deliver notice to Capital Regional District

Grange Road residents fear the loss of up to 50 trees

Council approves plan banning cycling in Haro Woods

Municipality accused of caving to small minority of park users

WATCH: Hundreds of gifts go out to Victoria’s Our Place patrons

The Angel Gifts Program saw 700 Christmas presents go out to the community

POLL: Are you dreaming of a white Christmas?

The rain Vancouver Island is famous for is coming down in buckets,… Continue reading

Vancouver Island man named Philadelphia Flyers assistant GM

Courtenay’s Brent Flahr spent nine-plus years in Minnesota

Warning issued as forecast calls for 20-foot waves in Tofino

Dangerous waves, strong currents and upper-shoreline flooding expected for Tofino-Ucluelet area

Oil tanker ban to be reviewed by committee

Indigenous groups for and against Bill C-48 travel to Ottawa to influence the Senate’s decision

An 800-pound pig named Theodore needs a forever home, B.C. society says

‘Theodore is not destined to be somebody’s bacon’

Teenager Alphonso Davies wins Canadian Men’s Soccer Player for the Year Award

Derek Cornelius and Chilliwack native, Jordyn Huitema were named Canadian Youth International Players of the Year

B.C. teen MMA fighter shows heart

Young Unity MMA competitors bring home Ws

Most Read