Canada: New Olympic Stadium roof will be more expensive than expected

source:; author: Maciek Ściłba

Canada: New Olympic Stadium roof will be more expensive than expected Work on the design of a new roof for a facility in Montreal is underway. It has been several months since it began and the project is still not fully completed. There is speculation that the investment will be more expensive than planned.


Montreal's Olympic Stadium, known as The Big O, has a long and storied history. The arena was built specifically for the Summer Olympics, which were held in this Canadian city in 1976. Construction of the venue was not completed until a year later, yet it hosted the opening and closing ceremonies of the event, as well as the major competitions. Montreal fans had been hoping for another big tournament after 50 years, but only Toronto and Vancouver are among the host cities of the 2026 FIFA World Cup, which will also take place in the Land of the Maple Leaf. Montreal fans can, however, take comfort in the bonus waiting for them on BonusFinder Canada.

The absence of the country's largest French-speaking venue from the list of World Cup hosts is undoubtedly a disappointment. However, this does not change the fact that The Big O needs to undergo an upgrade of its roofing. The structure, designed by renowned French architect Roger Tallibert, is now almost half a century old and has begun to pose a real danger to those attending events at the arena. The roof of the Olympic Stadium is undoubtedly a highly original structure. It was initially intended to be retractable, but this concept was eventually changed and it permanently covers all the seats in the stands and the entire pitch. It is suspended by ropes and attached to a 175-metre tower rising above the venue. In 1986, parts of the tower fell onto the pitch. A year later, a membrane was installed over the roof to ensure the safety of the fans.

The Big O© damlen0501

The roof, which has not been repaired for years, is cracking and leaking. The provincial government of Quebec recognised this and commissioned an investment project to comprehensively modernise the structure. A complete replacement of the roof sheathing, including all fixings, was planned for 2024. However, it appears that the timetable may not be met. Finished renovation plans have still not been shown. All because there is no final cost estimate yet. The arena's management agency has indicated that the technical ring surrounding the facility needs to be replaced. This is dictated by a change in construction law.

The ring is the concrete element on which the roof is supported. It has a circumference of almost half a kilometre and a diameter varying from 104 to 175 metres. The developer has indicated that it does not want to change the initial cost estimate and create a separate project to renovate the ring - this would mean two separate upgrade contracts. Issues are currently being worked on to enable such a solution to be implemented. It also means that the initial amount of between $200 million and $250 million secured by the Quebec provincial government in 2017 for this investment will certainly be higher.

The Big O© abdallah