The 2010 Winter Olympic Games
and Paralympic Games
were held in Vancouver
, British Columbia
. The Olympics ran from February 12 to February 28, 2010, and the Paralympics from March 12 to March 21, during which ten sports venues
were used, spread across Vancouver, Whistler, and the neighbouring areas of West Vancouver
. The majority of ice sport events were held in Vancouver, while Whistler, which normally serves as a ski resort, hosted the snow events. Six non-competition venues, three each in Vancouver and Whistler, provided athlete housing, space for media, and locations for ceremonies associated with the Games.
According to CEO John Furlong, VANOC "started our venue construction as early as possible".Construction on Cypress Mountain, the first new competition venue to be completed, began in March 2006 and was completed only eight months later, three years ahead of the start of the Games. By December 2007, all three competition venues at Whistler were completed and open for training and testing. Final construction was completed in February 2009, and sporting events were scheduled at the venues to ensure that they would be adequately tested before hosting the Olympic events. In total, six new competition venues were constructed: Cypress Mountain, Richmond Olympic Oval, UBC Thunderbird Arena, Vancouver Olympic/Paralympic Centre, Whistler Olympic Park, and The Whistler Sliding Centre.
The Whistler Sliding Centre was promoted as being one of the fastest sliding tracks in the world, which caused a number of concerns about safety. On February 12, 2010, hours before the opening ceremony, Georgian luger Nodar Kumaritashvili suffered a fatal crash during a training run when he was thrown off his sled and collided with a steel pole. He was travelling 143.3 km/h (89.0 mph) at the time. His accident came after a series of incidents in the week and reignited concerns about the track's safety. Investigations were conducted the same day, concluding that the accident was not caused by deficiencies in the track. As a preventative measure, an extra 100 ft (30 m) of wall was added after the end of Turn 16, and the ice profile was changed.