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Surrey mayor promises to build 60,000-seat stadium if re-elected


Surrey’s mayor is making an ambitious election promise ahead of his official campaign launch.

Doug McCallum says if re-elected he’s going to build one of the largest stadiums in the country.

McCallum wants to build a 60,000-seat stadium, roughly 6,000 more seats than in Vancouver's BC Place.

The mayor says the multi-use arena would be built somewhere along the Expo Line.

He says there is demand for it, claiming that half of all BC Lions fans come from Surrey.

A spokesperson for the Lions responded to that statistic in an email to CTV News.

“It’s just one of those lazy narratives that gets mentioned. A strong base in Surrey yes, but half of the ticket buyers would seem like a stretch,” wrote Matt Baker, manager of communications and content of the BC Lions.

The team’s practice facility is in the city, but its games are still played at BC Place.

Baker said the team was unaware of the mayor’s plans.

“We don’t really have anything to say on this as we had no knowledge of it prior to yesterday,” said Baker Thursday.

Eventually, McCallum says, he would like Surrey to have its own pro team.

There is no word yet on how much the project would cost.

The mayor says he hasn’t approached the province about funding, but is confident the city could finance it with the help of some large corporations that he’s been in talks with.

Mayoral candidate and former MP and MLA Gordie Hogg says McCallum needs to get his priorities straight.

“BC Place is heavily subsidized by the provincial government, which gives you some idea of how costly a facility like that is, not just in construction costs, but ongoing costs,” said Hogg in a statement.

He says Surrey taxpayers shouldn’t have to foot the bill.

“We have more important priorities for Surrey than the Doug McCallum Fantasy Stadium, starting with public safety,” wrote Hogg.

McCallum officially launches his re-election campaign Thursday morning at the Aria Convention Centre.

There are currently five candidates running for Surrey mayor: Liberal MP Sukh Dhaliwal, B.C. NDP MLA Jinny Sims, Surrey City Councillor Brenda Locke, Hogg and McCallum.

The election is Oct. 15. Top Stories


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