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2010 Games boosted economy: PWC report

Two studies conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) point to wide-ranging economic and social benefits from hosting the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

The reports, which cover the period of 2003-2009 and the first three months of 2010, show some positive impacts for both B.C. and Canada in the areas studied.

The greatest cumulative impacts occurred in employment, where more than 45,500 jobs were created. Incremental tourism spending is estimated at $463 million.

Venue construction by both VANOC and third-party investors is estimated to have generated $1.22 billion worth of activity. It is estimated that media coverage reached an audience of up to 3.8 billion people worldwide.

In the time periods studied, PwC found the Games generated between $2 billion and $2.5 billion in real gross domestic product (GDP) to British Columbia.

The PwC report is part of a series commissioned by the governments of Canada and British Columbia to measure social and economic impacts of the Games. 

PwCs Report 5 and Report 6 are available online at:

PwC will continue to monitor the impact of the Games over 2010. It has previously produced studies on the Sydney 2000 Summer Games and the London 2012 Summer Games.


Specific impacts by category

Environment and transportation

• 13 venues designed for long-term community use by incorporating multi-purpose legacy features, green building standards and accessibility standards for persons with a disability.

• Eight multi-purpose sport venues targeting Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) silver or better.

• 15 per cent reduction in carbon footprint of the Games due to energy efficiency and clean technologies.

• Diverted 76.8 per cent of waste from landfill at Games time.

• 45,000-kilometre carbon neutral torch relay.

• About 80 per cent of all trips by spectators to Olympic venues were by transit, cycling or walking. This marks the highest sustainable commute ever to a downtown Vancouver event.

• New innovations in building design and construction were introduced:

- On-site composting for green materials at the Whistler Olympic Park.

- Consumption monitoring, solar recovery, and waste-heat harvesting technology at the Vancouver Olympic and Paralympic Village.

- An innovative “wood wave” roof design using wood affected by the Mountain Pine Beetle infestation – installed at the Richmond Oval.



• Funding for approximately 26,700 units of subsidized housing in the City of Vancouver. The total annual subsidy for these units is nearly $105 million.

• Acquired 24 Single Room Occupancy hotels in Vancouver since 2007, preserving and protecting approximately 1,400 units of affordable, low-income housing stock.

• Partnered with eight municipalities to fast-track the approval and construction of 2,300 new supportive housing units in eight cities (Vancouver, Victoria, Surrey, Kelowna, Abbotsford, Campbell River, Maple Ridge and Nanaimo).

• More than doubled the number of shelter beds across the province from just 700 in 2001 to more than 1,570 today. Annual funding of approximately $60 million for shelters also helps shelters provide ongoing support services and connect people with community supports like housing, addictions services and medical care.


First Nations and Aboriginal people

• Aboriginal people were recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as full Games partners, an Olympic first.

• The Province’s Olympic budget included $16 million in Aboriginals Game legacy funding.

• Since 2003, Aboriginal businesses received $56.7 million in contracts with VANOC.

• $56,460 contributed to the 2010 Aboriginal Youth Legacy Fund through the sale of official licensed merchandise.

• VANOC contracted 96 Aboriginal artists from across Canada to produce permanent installations as part of the Venues’ Aboriginal Art Program.

• A $3.5-million investment in a Games-time 2010 Aboriginal Pavilion in Vancouver which, following the Games, was converted into a permanent installation for the Musqueam Nation.

• $5.7 million in procurement opportunities for inner-city residents and businesses.


For more information see the Province’s report, British Columbia’s Investments in the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, at:


2010 socio-economic impact study

This study reports on the impacts experienced in key topic areas during the period from 2003 to 2010.

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) has been undertaking this work, providing research and benchmarking services, and developing a series of reports outlining the results analysis.

A Framework Report (Report #1) was developed to outline the economic and social indicators to be examined, as well as methodologies to be used in collecting data for the study.

PwC also developed a summary report (Report #2) outlining preliminary results for the 2003 to 2007 time-period. 

Report #3 provided results for 2008, and Report #4 compared results with projections contained in the 2002 InterVISTAS report.

Last week they released Report #5 (2009) and Report #6 (economic benefits for first three months of 2010).

Report #7 will summarize complete results for 2010 and will be available in mid 2011. It will examine nine topic areas: economic development, business development, employment, social development, environmental sustainability, arts and culture, sport development, tourism, and Aboriginal participation.


PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) 

PwC firms provide industry-focused assurance, tax and advisory services.

More than 161,000 people in 154 countries in firms across the PwC network share their thinking, experience and solutions to develop opinions and advice.

See for more information. In Canada, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP ( and its related entities have more than 5,300 partners and staff in offices across the country.