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Burnaby's new community centre renamed after soccer great Christine Sinclair

Burnaby's Christine Sinclair currently plays for Portland Thorns FC in the National Women's Soccer League
Burnaby's Christine Sinclair has been honoured by the City of Burnaby by renaming a local facility after her.

One of the most iconic local athletes has been recognized by the City of Burnaby for her impact on the game of soccer internationally and locally. 

At Monday's council meeting (May 31), Burnaby council announced they have approved the renaming of the former Fortius Sport and Health Facilities to "Christine Sinclair Community Centre." 

“She’s probably the best known Burnabyite for the last probably three decades now,” Councillor Sav Dhaliwal said after announcing the renaming approval on behalf of council. 

“It’s a fitting honour for her." 

In December of 2020, the City of Burnaby agreed to buy the 5.16-acre property in a $26.6 million deal. 

The city signed a purchase and sale agreement with the Fortius Foundation to buy the land, including the roughly 146,000 square foot building on the property. 

The Fortius Foundation opened its facilities in 2013 as an integrated athlete development centre but in November of 2020, it announced they were closing as of December 31 with COVID-19 being a large factor. 

The centre includes a double-gymnasium, a fitness centre and office space.

Sinclair currently plays for Portland Thorns FC of the National Women's Soccer League, but it's her international career that has made her shine. 

On Jan. 29, 2020, the Burnaby product made world history when she scored international goal number 185, surpassing the previous all-time leader Abby Wambach of the U.S.

Sinclair has donned the maple leaf 297 times, starting 291 of those matches. 

She has 186 goals and 55 assists on the international stage to date. 

“Born and raised in Burnaby, Christine Sinclair has been a household name for decades," City of Burnaby Mayor Mike Hurley said at Monday's meeting. 

"She is the most successful soccer player ever to compete for Canada and one of the greatest Canadian athletes in history.

“We are so proud to have her name adorning a facility where the next generation of Burnaby’s sport heroes might get their start." 

- With files from Dustin Godfrey, Burnaby NOW