The Vancouver Whitecaps announced they are in the process of creating a new development club, which will be based out of Queen’s Park in New Westminster starting in March 2015.
The new team, which will play in the United States League PRO (third tier), will allow the franchise to develop their young players. This will also allow Canadian players to develop in their own backyard, helping to bridge the gap to the Major League Soccer.
“This is a great initiative that will bring tremendous benefits for our city,” said New Westminster Mayor Wayne Wright in a press release. “The upgrades to Queens Park Stadium including a new turf field, video scoreboard, and lighting, along with locating a Whitecaps FC USL PRO franchise in our community will put New Westminster on the map when it comes to the best soccer has to offer.”
Currently, the Whitecaps have a loan agreement with Charleston Battery of the USL PRO in South Carolina.
Vancouver has a team in the Pacific Development League (fourth tier), where their under -23 team competes. With the announcement, it is expected that team will cease to exist moving forward.
-with files by McKenzie Dalgleish