The leader of the group proposing to build the Bridal Veil Mountain Resort (BVMR) in the Fraser Valley supports British Columbia’s potential bid for the 2030 Olympic Winter Games, on the grounds that the ski resort could potentially host some of the competitive sporting events.
Robert Wilson, president of BVMR, said his group is announcing its support for 2030 after meeting last week with former VANOC CEO John Furlong, who pushed the idea of a repeat of the Olympic performances for the province at over the past year.
Plans for the all-season resort – comparable to the size of the Sun Peaks and Silver Star resorts – were first announced earlier this spring, and an expression of interest (EOI) request was also recently submitted to the General direction of the seaside resorts of the provincial government.
It is said to have about 11,500 acres of mountain recreation land, covering a footprint that spans Mt. Mercer, Mt. Thurston and Mt. Archibald, and supported by a large valley base village and two alpine base villages.
The valley base village next to the Trans-Canada Highway at the eastern edge of Chilliwack is said to have hotels, restaurants, cafes, retail and homes. Visitors would park their vehicles at Valley Base Village, then board one of two gondola lines to reach areas of the Alpine Village without cars and recreational activities year-round.
This area chosen for skiing and snowboarding is expected to experience significant snowfall and temperatures conducive to snow, according to regional records. The ski slopes would average 2,300 feet of vertical ski area.
The proponents indicated a potential partnership with the S’olh Temexw First Nation, with early discussions highlighting the possibility of joint participation and management, as well as development options and opportunities.
“With strong support from the Stó: lō and the local community, and from provincial, regional and municipal governments ready to help us meet the deadlines, we are confident that we could build a formidable hill station that meets Olympic standards.” Wilson said.
“But no matter what happens next, we fully support John’s vision and a potential BC bid for the 2030 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. British Columbians have already shown the world what we are doing. we can do, and the 2030 Olympic and Paralympic Games would be another opportunity to showcase our province and our cities to the world, and we would like Chilliwack to be a part of that story.
He adds that this aligns with Furlong’s concept of extending the responsibilities and legacy of the Olympic organization to more communities in British Columbia.
The various major reforms of the International Olympic Committee over the past decade, carried out after 2010, offer hosts the option of using facilities and venues further away from the main host city, and encourage the establishment of plans that fit. align with the long-term social goals of the host region. and economic goals.
If built, BVMR could position Chilliwack as one of the official host cities for 2030.
“We know there will be a lot of competition from cities across the province to be part of a bid in 2030, but if the province approves our proposal for Bridal Veil Mountain Resort, and we have the support of the Stó communities : lō, Chilliwack and the District, I would like us all to come together and make a proposal for consideration, ”Wilson continued.
“While there are no guarantees, the 2010 Games showed us all the tremendous benefits that come from hosting the Games and being a Host City. “
In 2010, Cypress Mountain in West Vancouver hosted freestyle skiing and snowboarding, Whistler Blackcomb’s Creekside hosted alpine skiing, and Whistler Olympic Park in the Callaghan Valley hosted biathlon, cross-country skiing, Nordic combined and ski jumping.
But Cypress Mountain was a problematic site for VANOC, with unusually warm weather conditions that winter and the site’s relatively low elevation resulting in a lack of snow crisis. The organizers used helicopters and trucks to bring enough snow to keep the competitions going.
The sports of freestyle skiing and snowboarding at the Olympics have also grown significantly with more disciplines since 2010, hence the general need for larger venues.
Slopestyle skiing and snowboarding and half-pipe skiing were added in 2014, big air snowboarding was added in 2018, and big air skiing will be added in 2022.
It is uncertain whether Cypress Mountain will be a suitable new host for these sports in 2030.
EOI’s application for BVMR is the first of three stages in the provincial government’s all-season resort development process. If this step is approved, the next step would be the submission of a detailed formal proposal, and later submission of the overall master plan for the complex. This process typically takes several years, not including the various approvals required from the City of Chilliwack and the Fraser Valley Regional District.
Some major proposals similar to those of the BVMR took decades to be fully considered.
BVMR will be built over the long term in phases, the first phase being one of the two tourist gondolas. However, the proponents indicated that the preliminary plans are designed so that the project can quickly scale up and expand as needed.
The promoters will organize a virtual open house on BVMR at 7 p.m. on Thursday June 17, 2021.