Ottawa contributing $166 million for expansion of Calgary convention centre

Marco Green
March 15, 2019

The Winter X Games will also feature musical performances.

The announcement was made by Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi and Alberta Minister of Culture and Tourism Ricardo Miranda on Wednesday morning. The Winter X Games were first held in 1997 and have been hosted by Aspen, Colo. since 2002. "The X Games features more than 200 world-class athletes, many of whom live and have trained here in the province, competing in a variety of skiing and snowboarding events and numerous young athletes, both on the slopes and on the stands, will go on to represent Canada at Olympic Games and beyond", said Miranda.

The Winter X Games tests its athletes' best tricks in these sports with signature events like Big Air, which launches competitors off a large jump to perform tricks, and superpipe, where snowboarders and skiers travel along a large halfpipe, performing tricks along the way.

The event, which usually happens in late January, is now held in worldwide venues throughout the world, and features not only sporting competitions but a full festival lineup with big-name musical performances.

Successfully hosting the games would result in an estimated $75 million boost in annual economic activity, over 10,000 out-of-region visitors, and 75,000 total spectators for each iteration.

Tourism officials say the events will support about 540 jobs annually and that securing the Canadian rights is the first step in bringing X Games to Canada.

WATCH: Ward 1 Coun.

Under the Investing in Canada Plan, the Government of Canada has approved over $4.1 billion for more than 215 projects for communities across Alberta since 2016.

Ward 1 Councillor Ward Sutherland said this will make the BMO the centrepoint in the country.

"We want this to be permanent".

Calgary has the opportunity to become the first Canadian city to join the X Games lineup if corporate sponsorship can be secured to bring the event to the city.

"If we could do this right and build it, it could be permanent at the Stampede grounds and Winsport."

The planned BMO Convention and Trade Centre expansion has taken another step forward with significant funding commitments from all levels of government. "It's about brining Calgary to a world stage".

Calgary-based Manifesto Sport Management and Insight Productions Ltd. are teaming up to develop the X Games in Calgary.

The Winter X Games have seen top athletes perform at the event in the past like American snowboarder Shaun White and Canadian snowboarder Mark McMorris.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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