Olympic Stadium is in line for a major upgrade, as officials are proceeding with plans to install a new roof on former home of the Montreal Expos.
Quebec officials have signed off on a replacement of the roof at Olympic Stadium, with the project expected to cost somewhere in the range of $200-$250 million. Details are expected to be announced on Friday by the Olympic Installations Board (OIB), but the project would replace the current fixed roof, which was installed in 1998 and has seen its condition worsen over the last several years.
In planning the workm officials are looking for “a fixed but flexible” roof that can better withstand the conditions. More from The Montreal Gazette:
Quebec’s harsh winters played havoc with that roof, which was made out of the miracle product of the day — Kevlar — and the government doesn’t want to get burned twice.
This time Quebec is looking for someone able to manufacture “a fixed but flexible,” style roof which can be partially dismantled in some areas on short notice to meet the needs of groups that want to hold events under the sun or stars.
Such stadium roofs exist in Marseille and Japan. Quebec believes such a roof will help transform the stadium into a money maker instead of a money pit.
“We want to see if this is technically feasible and financially viable,” said an official.
Since 2007, workers have had to repair about 7,500 tears in the current roof. A new roof could be installed by 2023.
Olympic Stadium was home to the Expos from 1977-2004, the team’s last season in Montreal before relocating to Washington, DC. In recent years, the ballpark has hosted the highly-successful annual spring training exhibitions for the Toronto Blue Jays.