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Where some see challenges

We see a crowning achievement

Like all good magic, what you don’t see is what really matters.

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BC Place

1 largest cable-supported retractable roof system in the world
60000 capacity of the stadium
680000 square feet
552 1500W metal halide floodlights
35 total length of steel cable used to support the roof
36 perimeter steel masts
18000 additional tonnes of mass on the existing stadium base structure
500 savings versus building a new stadium
3 distinct phases completed in 4.5 years

with a press of a button, the crowd goes wild.

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Project slideshow

see how it all came together

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Phillips Barratt, a WSP legacy company, were the architects and engineers for the original building with the air-supported roof, which opened in 1983.

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Sketch of the new cable-supported, retractable roof, which is unique in North America and the largest of its type in the world. No other domed stadium has replaced its roof with an entirely new and different roof structure.

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Sketch of the new cable-supported, retractable roof and base building. The roof masts are prominently featured, providing a new iconic appearance for the stadium.

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Work on the retractable roof began in May 2010, shortly after the completion of the 2010 Winter Olympics & Paralympics.

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Construction crews had to work along the trusses, 215 feet above the ground.

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The “crown” features 36 steel masts around the perimeter

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The fixed portion of the roof is a PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene)-coated fiberglass tensioned membrane, supported on steel tube arched purlins carried by the primary cable truss.

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Adam Patterson, Structural Engineer, and Brian Griffin, Director of Facility Operations at BC Place, chat on the field, which features new artificial turf designed to achieve FIFA 2-star certification, the highest possible rating.

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The centre-hung high-definition scoreboard measures 68 by 38 feet (21 m × 12 m) and is the second largest in North America.

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Below the roof eave is clearstory façade clad in ETFE (Ethylene tetrafluoroethylene) membrane, a clear fluorocarbon film. This is the first use of this material in Canada and its selection was in keeping with an open and light-weight design concept that dramatically increases the natural lighting in the building.

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The field-of-play lighting system includes 552, 1500W metal halide floodlights

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As part of Phase 1 (Interior Upgrades), new wider seats were put in for extra spectator comfort. The new seats are 20 inches wider and each have a cup holder.

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Concurrent with the roof construction a significant number of additional stadium upgrades were designed and constructed, including upgrades to existing ramps, upgrades to entrances, three new entrance structures and an additional surrounding plaza.

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The stadium’s new roof profile combined with the digitally controlled lighting system which allows the entire façade to be animated in multi-colored lighting has created a vibrant presence in the neighbourhood and along Vancouver’s skyline.

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BC Place Stadium is home to both the BC Lions of the Canadian Football League (CFL) and Vancouver Whitecaps FC of Major League Soccer (MLS).

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The venue’s greatest asset, its urban location, would likely have been lost had a new development been pursued.

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The new roof covers 40,000 m2 with a retractable center of nominally 7,500 m2. The primary structure of the roof is all exterior; in essence the roof “floats” over a large clerestory creating a new open airy interior.

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As a result of the aggressive schedule, as well as close cooperation between owner, designers and contractors – BC Place was reopened to the public as a virtually new world class facility, both on time and on budget, and in the process was also the focus of global attention as host facility for the 2010 Winter Olympics.

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