Wednesday, November 14, 2012

For some in Delta, there's no better place than Prince Rupert for Container Terminal Expansion

While Prince Rupert residents for the most part anxiously await the latest expansion of the Fairview Container Port, plans by the Vancouver-Fraser Port Authority to expand their holdings in Delta are receiving just a little bit of push back from residents in the Lower Mainland.

In fact, the success of Prince Rupert's port and the prospect of it's expansion is making for much in the way of talking points for those that find troubles with the blue prints of the Vancouver-Fraser Port Authority and their plans for what is known as the Roberts Bank Terminal 2 Project.

Those plans include the controversial construction of a man-made 115 hectare island (284 acres) as well as an inter modal yard and featuring wider causeway and road and rail expansions. All of it in an area that locals suggest is an internationally significant fish and wildlife habitat in the Roberts Bank area.

Susan Jones of the Boundary Bay Conservation Committee against Port Expansion makes her case against the Terminal 2 expansion at Roberts Bank, using much of the math that supporters of the Port of Prince Rupert's expansion plans use. Numbers that indicate that with expansion in Prince Rupert and further expansion of Vancouver's Centerm facility, the need for a Robert's Bank expansion is not really required considering the demand at this time.

It's not the first time that lower mainland groups have pointed to Prince Rupert as a much more sensible option for the province's transportation foundation, with a low population base and rail connection already in place into the US, many in Vancouver say the future should be up north and not with continued development in the Greater Vancouver area.

It will no doubt  be a battle that carries on well into the future in Vancouver, but it's an argument that makes expansion plans for Prince Rupert that much more workable and for many in the already congested south, plans that are desirable.

And while the Port of Prince Rupert clearly won't have much to say about the troubles of the Roberts Bank project in moving forward, they surely must be quite happy that the presence and importance of Prince Rupert's own expansion plans continue to gain not only acceptance, but support.

The full review from Ms. Jones can be found in the Delta Optimist

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