Doug McCallum's "fantasy stadium" slammed by Surrey rival

Aug 25 2022, 4:48 pm

Less than 24 hours after Doug McCallum announced his plans to create Canada’s largest stadium, the Surrey mayor is already being slammed by critics and rivals.

McCallum announced yesterday that he wanted to build a stadium in Surrey that could seat 60,0000 people for “all sports.”

“Part of our commitments that we’re going to say as part of our Safe Surrey Coalition is we are going to build a 60,000-person arena in Surrey,” McCallum told reporters from Cloverdale at the site of a new sports complex that broke ground today.

Gordie Hogg, a rival candidate who will be running in the Surrey mayoral election with Surrey First this October, had some strong words when it comes to McCallum’s “fantasy stadium,” as he put it.

“Doug McCallum has put absolutely no thought into this idea, because if he did, he’d know Surrey would be saddled with a white elephant that would cost taxpayers an arm and a leg each and every year,” Hogg said in a statement.

To put the potential cost into perspective, the brand new Climate Pledge Arena renovation cost Seattle $1.15 billion.

This also wouldn’t be the first time McCallum has offered outlandish ideas.

Back in 2019, he envisioned turning city roads into a canal to create a “popular hot spot” in Surrey.

Hogg thinks that the City of Surrey has more important priorities than a 60,000-seat stadium, “starting with public safety.”

The statement from Hogg also mentions that the announcement about McCallum’s “fantasy stadium” was made at the Cloverdale Ice Centre, a project that McCallum had cancelled before bringing it back with a higher price tag.

“Tax dollars don’t seem to mean much to Doug McCallum, if they did, he’d think before he speaks, something he didn’t do today.”

Hogg suggests the idea is unnecessary when there’s already a “major facility” in BC Place.

“BC Place does a terrific job, but the Lower Mainland certainly doesn’t need another 60,000-seat stadium, and Surrey taxpayers don’t need the bills that come with it.”

Another Surrey mayoral candidate, Professor Kuldip Pelia, suggests that he will build a community college with a capacity for 20,000 students if he’s elected.

The Surrey mayoral election takes place on October 15.

Amir AliAmir Ali

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