From plastic to fabric: How Roger’s Arena is helping the planet

Photo 2015-10-26, 11 29 03 AM

Vancouver has always had a reputation as an eco-friendly city, but things are about to get even greener. The managers behind one of Vancouver’s most popular landmarks, Roger’s Arena, have started to reinvent the way we recycle.

Anyone who has attended an event there this year may have noticed an abundance of Canucks-coloured bins which give people the option to dispose of their waste, recyclables and compost. What sets these disposals aside from others, however, is what is being done with the waste after it has been collected.

There is a focus specifically on the plastic bottles being recycled, as they are collected from the bins and put through a process that turns them into t-shirts. For each shirt, three bottles are recycled into a polyester that is then blended with organic cotton to create the shirt. All of this is performed in Canada, at a Fair Trade Certified level. These t-shirts are sold at the Canucks Team Store, and according to employees, have been a huge success.

“It has been quite a hit at the arena.” says Daniel Reddy, an employee at the store. “These shirts are Photo 2015-10-26, 11 28 36 AMmade for our primary tees, and they are being sold very quickly. The price and the quality is very reasonable, and you know where the product is coming from.”

The shirts cost $24.99, within the same price range as regular shirts. The fabric is softer and more durable than the average shirt, which Reddy says is due to the unique, eco-friendly process used to produce it.

Is the fact that it’s environmentally friendly really what is making it sell? According to Kiran Mehat, an associate at the Canucks Team Store, it’s a huge contributing factor.

“Everyone wants something that helps save the world, so anything that is environmentally friendly is always going to be a bonus,” she said. “I personally have told people about the t-shirt being environmentally sustainable and it has been a factor in them actually purchasing it or not.”

Reddy says the shirts are just the beginning. “In the future, we’re hoping to have a full line of eco-friendly clothing to create more options for the consumer. They’ll be doing ties soon, and I think scarves as well.”


Journalism student at KPU.

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