B.C.’s tourism sector is getting a $50-million boost, which includes millions in upgrades for Science World.
Following a tour of the iconic Vancouver tourism spot Tuesday (April 25), Premier David Eby announced Science World would be getting $20 million of the funding.
Eby said Science World the dome is the only part of the building that hasn’t had any upgrades since 1986 “and it shows.”
The province says that “critical systems” in Science World’s dome are at the end of their lives, and HVAC and electrical issues “must be addressed.” The dome is currently leaking, making the theatre unusable.
The $20 million will be for “priority infrastructure repairs and improvements to the dome and other parts of the building,” and will include new electrical, energy efficiencies and other “critical infrastructure upgrades.”
Tracy Redies, Science World CEO, said the dome was initially made to last just six months during Expo ‘86. Thanks to engineers and maintenance staff, it has last more than three decades, “but future has caught up with the iconic dome.”
The remaining $30 million is for existing tourism infrastructure throughout the province, to “foster globally competitive destinations, strengthen a year-round visitor economy and support sustainability, accessibility, and inclusion.” It includes new tourism attractions, campground developments, incorporating Indigenous culture and language, accessibility improvements and climate change adaptations.
The province said Tuesday’s announcement is in addition to $15 million allocated for 2023.
Some of those “shovel-projects” include the Western Canada Mountain Bike Tourism Association’s provincewide project to improve visitor responsibility on mountain bike trails and collect data on visitor use to assist with trail maintenance; the City of Delta’s project Barns to Beaches Bike Route, supporting agri-tourism and encouraging active transportation; and the Tāłtān Central Government’s signage project, supporting the implementation of a signage masterplan that includes Tāłtān language, oral history, storytelling, and worldview.