Vancouver, BC (April 2, 2019) – Ten years ago, the Vancouver Convention Centre opened the doors to its West building on April 3, 2009, marking the beginning of an unprecedented opportunity for British Columbia to shine on the world stage through the offering of an inspirational space in a breathtaking location. 5,561 events later, the West building of the Convention Centre is an icon for the city of Vancouver and an award-winning international industry leader. The events that take place here contribute to the advancement of global collaboration and transfer of knowledge on issues that matter to this generation, not only in BC, but around the world.
With the addition of the West building that tripled the facility’s capacity, the Convention Centre has welcomed over 9 million guests from around the world and generated over $2.4 billion in direct spending for British Columbia over the past decade. The 5,561 events range from major city-wide conventions, including the renowned TED Conference and SIGGRAPH computer graphics conference to consumer and trade shows, private meetings, banquets and fundraisers, community events, special events, public celebrations, and film and TV shoots.
Apart from the economic impact generated by the expenditures of event attendees and exhibitors, the impact of these conventions and events are more far-reaching. Whether it is advancing academic and scientific research; driving awareness or solutions to a global issue; or introducing investment and new ideas to a host city, the meetings hosted create legacies in local communities, industries and globally. One example is the 2015 International AIDS Society Conference held in Vancouver, which called for a plan to eradicate the disease by 2030.
The Convention Centre is proud to have attracted a diverse range of events in the past decade. Here is breakdown of the facility’s top 10 accomplishments:
1. Economic Driver: over $2.4 billion in direct spending injected into the local economy
2. Globally-Acclaimed Meetings Venue: 5,561 events attended by people from across British Columbia and around the globe
3. Community Builder: home to community and charitable events that have raised $75 million for local causes; and partner with numerous charities
4. Global Sustainability Leader: world’s first double LEED Platinum certified convention centre
5. World’s Best: 46 awards, including back-to-back honours of ‘Best Convention Centre Service’ by the Watkins Research Group
6. Great Place to Work: officially Great Place to Work-Certified™
7. Service Excellence: first convention centre in North America granted exclusive Corporate Affiliate membership to Les Clefs d’Or Canada
8. Culinary Excellence: award-winning scratch kitchen
9. Industry Accelerator: platform for knowledge sharing in countless sectors, including life sciences, information technologies, food and wine, clean energy, education, natural resources, finance, entertainment and engineering to name a few
10. Bright Future: conventions booked through to 2027; including the 2025 International Convention of Alcoholics Anonymous expected to draw 48,000 delegates from around the world
Lisa Beare, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture
“Over the past decade, millions of people from around the world have visited BC and the Vancouver Convention Centre to forge new partnerships, gain insights and celebrate their passions. Establishing Vancouver as a global destination for conferences and special events is helping to build a strong, sustainable economy and showcase everything that Vancouver has to offer visitors.”
Ian Aikenhead, Q.C., Chair, BC Pavilion Corporation
“The Vancouver Convention Centre is an asset that British Columbians can all be proud of. The impact of this award-winning facility reaches all corners of the province – from the significant economic activity generated by attendees, to the growth, opportunities and development that come from the myriad of events hosted.”
Ken Cretney, President and CEO, BC Pavilion Corporation
“We are extremely proud that the Vancouver Convention Centre has played a pivotal role in the past decade in elevating Vancouver’s position on the world stage. From attracting the most sought after global meetings and community events that leave lasting legacies, to setting new industry standards in sustainability and service, it has been a remarkable 10 years. This success is a testament to the passion and dedication of our team at the Vancouver Convention Centre and the support from our exceptional industry partners – we look forward to another successful decade ahead.”
Ty Speer, President and CEO, Tourism Vancouver
“Over the years, Vancouver has become synonymous with green spaces, breathtaking scenery and as a destination where people can recharge their creative engines. We are a city on the edge of nature with acclaimed sustainable practices and unparalleled culinary experiences. The Vancouver Convention Centre embodies all of these important traits. The city is known to inspire, and the Vancouver Convention Centre is the foundation where delegates from different global communities – networks of expert educators, scientists and creators – can gather to collaborate on new opportunities and seek out their own inspiration.”
Vicki O. Tucker, 2019 Chair of the American Bar Association (ABA) Business Law Section
(ABA’s 2009 and 2019 meetings were the first and last convention hosted within the West building’s 10-year span)
“The Vancouver Convention Centre has ample, state-of-the-art meeting rooms, and lovely spaces for networking events that overlook the water. Our members tend to be very active and appreciate the ability to get outdoors between sessions and explore this very walkable city, and especially Stanley Park. Best of all, the number of Canadian business lawyers joining and holding leadership roles in the Section has continued to grow since we were first in Vancouver in 2009. It is nice to be able to bring a Section Meeting back to a place where so many of them practice!”
Editors: For high-resolution photos, infographic and video, please click here.