Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Canada House: What happened here?

As the postcard being handed out in the Canada pavilion says "These are Canada's games-Ce sont les jeux de tout le Canada. " So why did the federal government appear to decide to begin the planning for the pavilion in November? While I do not have first hand experience with the decision making leading up to the tender call, it seems that a two week tender period for a project of this significance is both irresponsible and bordering on the preposterous. Someone should be called to explain this, especially given the final product, both inside and outside.So what is inside? Mainly sports related exhibits, some 'we games' and interactive exhibits, although there is one 'sustainability-durabilite' display that highlights the federal contributions to Vancouver's Olympic Village and other projects.What's not there is anything to help international visitors to get a better appreciation of our country, other than a badly designed pamphlet and a video monitor that was showing the opening ceremony.I can appreciate that given the limited space, it would be hard to communicate too much, and I can't disagree with the focus on Canadian Olympic achievements, but this pavilion really is a bit of an embarrassment.One example. There was a fellow signing autographs, but no one knew who he was. No sign, nothing! It's just one example of the poor planning that went into this production. I realize it's too late to change the pavilion, but maybe someone will think about putting up a sign to let people know who is at the table signing autographs in the future!

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