One Vancouver City Councillor is keen on having the city host the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile’s (FIA) Formula E Championships.
NPA Councillor Elizabeth Ball is submitting a motion that will request city staff to look at the opportunity of becoming a host city for FIA’s one-day race featuring quiet, electric-only Formula cars.
“Vancouverites love their events,” said Ball, “and the Formula E opportunity to get out in the open air together, to cheer for a favourite, and yet do so while respecting the environment is a real winner.”
There would be economic and cultural benefits, in addition to the demonstration of the city’s global commitment to sustainability and the environment.
The annual championship series was first announced in 2012 and the inaugural season of 10 races in 10 different global cities will take place in 2014/2015. The first race is scheduled this September in Beijing, followed by other races at Putrajaya (Malaysia), Punta del Este (Uruguay), Buenos Aires, Miami, Long Beach, Monte Carlo, Berlin and London.
The race takes place in a street circuit, usually within highly developed areas, and can be best compared with the now defunct Molson Indy Vancouver Champ Car race.
From 1990 to 2004, the Molson Indy was one of Vancouver’s largest summer events – next to the Celebration of Light – and drew in crowds in excess of 300,000 over the entire weekend.
The 2.865 kilometre street circuit was located on along Pacific Boulevard, Expo Boulevard and Quebec Street while staging areas, stadium grandstands and festival sites were located on the Concord Pacific Lands at Northeast False Creek and the City of Vancouver’s large property at Southeast False Creek.
However, sponsorship issues and the impending development of Southeast False Creek for the Olympic Village forced the cancellation of the Vancouver event and eventual relocation to Edmonton. Residents of the condominium towers adjacent to Main Street-Science World also complained about the noise and disruption during the three day festival period.
With the large and flexible space that such an event would require, it is not known where such an race could be held in or near downtown Vancouver.
Featured Image: Duncan Lang