VANCOUVER, BC – The first team moved into the Whitecaps FC National Soccer Development Centre (NSDC) at UBC, built in partnership with the University of British Columbia and the Government of British Columbia, on Wednesday, June 14, 2017.
The third and final phase of the WFC NSDC at UBC features a three-storey, 38,000 square feet state-of-the-art fieldhouse; a design partnership between BBB Architects, internationally recognized sports architects, and Acton Ostry Architects, an award-winning architectural firm based in Vancouver.
In total, the multi-campus NSDC also includes seven fields – two artificial turf fields at Simon Fraser University, and five (three grass and two artificial turf fields) constructed, refurbished, and improved fields at UBC.
“Our new home at the University of British Columbia is the next major step in the evolution of soccer in our city and country,” said Whitecaps FC president Bob Lenarduzzi. “I’ve been involved with this club from the outset and we’ve never really had a training facility to call home. This is a game changer for our club with respect to recruiting and developing players, coaches, and staff.”
The new fieldhouse offers a number of exciting features, including a two-storey weight room with glass windows on one end and a fully-mirrored wall on the other, creating a stunning, panoramic view of the new grass fields and surrounding mountains. Additional features include a players’ lounge, a kitchen with individualized nutritional options for each player, a hydrotherapy-equipped sports science wing, a branch dedicated for UBC use, and a specific entrance/workspace for media.
The fieldhouse is in the process of receiving its LEED Gold certification, meaning it is a high-performing green building when it comes to sustainable site development, water efficiency, energy efficiency, material selection, and indoor environment quality.
“This is one of the biggest days in the over 40 year history of the club,” said Whitecaps FC chief operating officer Rachel Lewis. “Our Whitecaps FC kids, in programs across the country, now have a place they can aspire to one day call their home.”
In September 2012, Whitecaps FC announced a joint partnership with UBC and the government of British Columbia to construct this world-class development centre at UBC’s Thunderbird Park, with financial contributions from the provincial government and Whitecaps FC, and UBC providing the land. As part of that agreement, UBC’s Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Centre has been serving as Vancouver’s temporary training centre as the second phase. The first phase includes two artificial turf fields at Simon Fraser University, which serves as a home for the Girls Elite REX program, which is in partnership with SFU, BC Soccer, and Canada Soccer. In total, the multi-campus NSDC cost $32.5 million.