The 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver will be an economic boon at a time when one is badly needed, Canada's minister of state for sport told officials from throughout the region today. "It's put us in a very strong position," Minister Gary Lunn told 500 U.S. and Canadian officials gathered in Boise for the annual summit meeting of the Pacific Northwest Economic Region. "You're going to see a lot of Americans traveling to the Pacific Northwest." Already, he said, "The province built a brand-new highway from Vancouver to Whistler." In addition to boosting access to the Olympics, that'll make the popular Whistler-Blackcomb resort area more easily accessible to travelers permanently.
Canada already has spent $2 billion on the Olympics, Lunn said, an investment it expects to pay off in increased tourism and economic spinoffs that will last for decades. You can read my full story here at spokesman.com.