Event Centre Brings Opportunity

By Gary Ahuja, Langley Times - July 24, 2008

The slow, droning noise of heavy machinery continues daily in Willoughby as work progresses on the new Langley Events Centre. The walls are up, and the roof should be on in a matter of a few weeks.

And inside the walls of the new $56 million facility are countless opportunities for athletes, especially at the amateur level.

The three initial partners are the Township of Langley, the provincial government and the Langley Development Group. The latter two contributed $15 million apiece, while the Township came up with $16.5 million.

The first event to be held at the events centre will be the Douglas Day dinner on Nov. 19 of this year, to coincide with the 150th birthday of B.C.

Certain portions of the centre are expected to be opened in late 2008 and early 2009 with all of the other finishing touches expected to be completed by no later than March 2009.

When all is said and done, the building will serve as a sporting hub, and not just for Langley, either.

In addition to the three main partners, several other groups have since jumped on board and helped make up the gap between the initial $45 million price tag and the new $56 million budget.

Langley School District, Trinity Western University and Langley Gymnastics Foundation are all making substantial financial contributions.

And other groups - the Fraser Valley Italo-Canadian Society, Basketball BC, the B.C. Wood Council, the Langley Chiefs junior A hockey organization, the International Basketball League's Vancouver Titans, the Steve Nash Youth Basketball League, the Langley Thunder senior A lacrosse team, the junior A lacrosse South Fraser Stickmen, and Global Sports Services are also involved.