Vancouver city council will vote on spending $1 million on Olympic lights

On Tuesday (October 28), Vancouver city council will vote on a staff recommendation to  allocate $1 million in taxpayers' funds to  light up the town for the Olympics and Paralympics in 2010.

The million-dollar expenditure would come out of the City's $20-million Olympic Legacy Reserve, which council approved in 2007.

The entire cost of the lighting project is $2 million, according to the report; the remainder will be included in the capital plan, which  is the  subject of a  plebiscite  in the November civic election.

Last month, council voted to spend $650,000 of OIympic Legacy Reserve funds on Olympic banners.

If council approves the latest staff recommendation, the City will hire a lighting consultant and lighting artist "to create distinctive lighting schemes that will assist with wayfinding to significant Olympic and Paralympic sites, create  a unique sense of place, and add a special visual effect that will help liven and celebrate the City during the Olympic period".

The blocks of Mainland and Hamilton in Yaletown were chosen in part  because of  their location between two "Olympic Live Sites": David Lam Park at the foot of Drake Street, and the former bus depot site across from the Sandman Hotel on West Georgia Street.

The other location is along Cambie Street from the south end of the bridge, potentially extending to King Edward Avenue.

"This stretch of Cambie was selected because it is a direct link from the airport to downtown Vancouver, it ties into the Hillcrest Olympic curling rink, and it  passes City Hall," the staff report stated.