Gateway Gazette

Crews Mobilize at Westridge Marine Terminal to Resume On-Water Construction

Source TransMountain

On-water construction activity has resumed at Westridge Marine Terminal (WMT) in Burnaby, BC. On September 27, 2019, the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority (Port Authority) issued Trans Mountain a new Project Permit authorizing us to recommence construction activity on-water at the marine terminal. Construction activities on-land began in August 2019. This work, along with other on-shore work at Westridge, has been previously approved by the Canada Energy Regulator (CER) (formally known as the National Energy Board or NEB).

The Project was approved by the Port Authority subject to 64 permit conditions that Trans Mountain must meet to ensure the Project is constructed safely, will not likely cause significant adverse environmental effects and considers the interests of local communities.

The construction activities scheduled to begin this year include:

  • Site preparation activities
  • In-water construction of new shipping berths
  • Foreshore extension work
  • Water treatment facilities
  • Decommissioning and demolition of certain facilities

Most construction will occur from the water using floating equipment such as marine derricks, barges, tugs and workboats. Equipment required for marine work will be barged to the site and workers will be transported by water taxi and bus to reduce overall traffic in the area.

Our goal is to minimize disruption to our neighbours during construction. Trans Mountain and its contractors have incorporated mitigation strategies into the management plans, including Traffic Management Plans, Construction Environmental Management Plans and plans to mitigate noise, lighting and emissions.

Construction activities will mainly take place between 7 am and 8 pm, Monday to Saturday, with the exception of night welding work. There will be no pile-driving activities planned outside the standard construction hours. Other night shift work may be required; however, activities would be at low-noise levels, permission would be required from the Port Authority and notification would be provided in advance.

In order to minimize noise impacts from construction activity, Trans Mountain will abide by all Health Canada and BC Oil and Gas Commission guidelines as defined in the Noise Management Plans for WMT and the Burnaby Tunnel.

Safety is our number one priority. Trans Mountain will regularly communicate with and update all marine waterway users about safe navigation around our terminal, including Indigenous groups on our construction activities.

The construction work area for Westridge is defined by a floating construction safety boom, which is marked with appropriate navigation lighting and controls. The work area consists of the entire expanded dock area, as well as a temporary working area needed for the terminal’s construction. On-water safety vessels will provide guidance and assistance as required.

Expansion of our marine operations will play a vital part in enabling Canada’s petroleum products to reach new and emerging markets.

At present, there is one loading berth at Westridge Marine Terminal. The expansion includes replacing the existing single berth with a new three-berth dock complex to accommodate the increased capacity of the pipeline system. Changes at the dock complex also include new support facilities to moor smaller utility and service vessels, as well as new fire protection, vapour recovery and emergency response equipment.

On August 28, 2017, the Port Authority previously issued a Project Permit authorizing upgrades to Westridge Marine Terminal and we commenced construction in September 2017. However, as a result of the August 30, 2018 Federal Court of Appeal Decision, we suspended construction and shutdown activities in a safe, secure and environmentally appropriate manner. With the new Project Permit from the Port Authority in place , in-water works began on October 4, 2019.

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