quote:Soccer stadium needs a second look
Don Larson, Special to the Sun
Published: Thursday, April 17, 2008
Why would anyone risk soccer moms and kids by placing a new Whitecaps Stadium beside a huge railway shunting yard that carries dangerous chemicals?
Do we want even the remote possibility of mixing soccer or music fans with "trichloroisocyanuric acid" during a half-time hotdog munch?
The 2004 emergency response guidebook states "inhalation, ingestion by contact (skin, eyes) with vapours or substance may cause severe injury, burns or death." And this is a direct quote from the joint publication by Transport Canada and the U.S. Department of Transportation.
Next on the list of concerns to local residents is noise. At up to 92 decibels, the Whitecaps Stadium should keep working-class families and young professionals living nearby up at all hours.
Vehicle congestion before and after each event will be a problem, too. In spite of public transit, about two-thirds of those going to the proposed Whitecaps Stadium will use private vehicles.
And what about the $131-million vehicle ramp that would have to be built to get cars from the stadium to Granville Street?
Is it David Beckham or Posh Spice who is going to pay for this? Oh, the taxpayer?
Women's groups in the Downtown Eastside have expressed concerns about Carrall Street pedestrian overpass will likely be built over the railway tracks and to the Whitecaps Stadium.
Can you say: "New Granville brawl, er, mall?"
Libby Davies, MP for Vancouver East, in her letter to federal Transportation Minister Lawrence Cannon, says, "I believe that core value for the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority is to develop, sustain and enhance port infrastructure as a nexus for trade and transportation for the long term; and that this value serves local, regional and national economic interests -- none of which is compatible with the development of a soccer stadium."
Don Larson is a community activist in Vancouver.
© The Vancouver Sun 2008