City prefers Lac du Bois route for pipeline

The city would prefer to see the proposed Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion travel through Lac du Bois.

KAMLOOPS - As we wind down on the public comment period for the Kinder Morgan expansion project city staff are pointing to the Lac du Bois route as the better option while a group trying to protect the park has garnered more than 6,600 signatures against the route.

Two options have been put forward for the proposed Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion — installing a second pipeline parallel to the existing pipeline through Westsyde or installing a pipeline right-of-way through Lac du Bois Grassland Protected Area immediately to the west of Westsyde.

Because of the current and future commercial and residential development in Westsyde, as well as the amount of city utility infrastructure, city staff prefer the Lac du Bois route, according to a report set to go before council Tuesday afternoon.

The report notes more than 100 property owners would be directly impacted by their backyards becoming ‘a heavy industrial worksite’ and construction would also impact schools, parks and businesses.

Over the past two years city staff have held several workshops and done a site tour of the proposed Lac du Bois route. Staff note while there may be ‘some negative aspects to installing a pipeline’ through the area, it is believed much of the area will see restoration work that will mitigate those issues.

While the city prefers the Lac du Bois route staff do note they will only back that option if it meets ‘all applicable regulatory requirements.’

Sierra Club B.C. does not feel the same way. The group started a petition to keep the pipeline out of four provincial parks, including Lac du Bois. The club is also looking to protect Finn Creek Park and North Thompson River Park near Clearwater and Bridal Veil Falls Park near Chilliwack.

So far more than 6,600 people have signed the petition objecting to the pipeline project going through provincial parks and demands the government no longer allow industrial research in provincial parks and protected areas.

Both proposed routes will see the expansion go through the airport gateway and Kenna Cartwright Park as well. The city was granted intervenor status and will be able to ask questions of the company if staff are not satisfied by the information provided during the hearing process.

If approved, construction could begin in 2015 or 2016 with the twinned pipeline expected to go into service beginning in 2017. The twinning will allow the system to move 890,000 barrels per day, a significant increase over the current 300,000 barrels per day.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Jennifer Stahn at jstahn@infonews.ca or call 250-819-3723. To contact an editor, email mjones@infonews.ca or call 250-718-2724.

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Editor’s note: • Watch shifts at the Vernon detachment have fallen to as low as three roadable officers. • The department suffers from chronic understaffing. • Sources, who we trust and who have knowledge of the s

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