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IT’S A rare day in Terrace when there isn’t a sighting of at least one of Valard’s baby blue pickup trucks.
At last count the main contractor working on BC Hydro’s Northwest Transmission Line had more than 200 trucks in the area, a sign of full-on work leading up to the scheduled completion in late spring of the region’s largest-ever public sector construction project.
Revelations of cost overruns brought on by project add-ons, unanticipated construction challenges and the like aside, the transmission line brought badly needed income and jobs to the area.
The transmission line is also the foundation for more development north of here for it will provide the power for at least one mine, Red Chris, also due to open late this spring. And it will transmit power to the provincial grid from run-of-river projects owned by AltaGas.
While the Northwest Transmission Line work may be coming to a close, BC Hydro is going to continue its construction activity in the area by replacing the aging 287kv transmission line between Terrace and Kitimat with at least one and possibly two new lines of the same size.
Although not as extensive as the Northwest Transmission Line, this work will provide an additional economic stimulus to the area as the decade progresses. With one major line running north and at least one new line running south, Terrace’s role as a regional hub will continue.