A rendering of the expanded Fairview Terminal

Fairview Terminal expansion official

Construction is to conclude in 2017 on the terminal

Phase 2 of Fairview Terminal is officially moving forward.

The expansion of the terminal to accommodate an additional 500,000 TEUs to a total of 1.3 million TEUs was announced on March 10 during an event at the Port Interpretive Centre, with construction expected to last 24 to 36 months and be complete in mid-2017.

“Today’s announcement affirms the value of the forward-looking investment in Prince Rupert’s original Fairview Terminal conversion project. The strategic vision, partnership and alignment of the original partners — Maher, CN, the Governments of Canada and British Columbia, and the Port of Prince Rupert — seized an opportunity that is still paying dividends today,” said Prince Rupert Port Authority president and CEO Don Krusel.

“We’re very pleased to see Maher Terminals continue delivering on the vision of fast, reliable container service — while creating new opportunities for the workers, communities, and nations who benefit from this trade gateway.”

The expansion will be undertaken by Fairview operator Maher Terminals, with a consortium of Fraser River Pile and Dredge and BEL Contracting selected as the general contractor. Among the work to be done is the reclamation of approximately 3.7 hectares of land, as well as the installation of crane rails. Rail services will also be upgraded with four working tracks added to the expanded terminal footprint and an extension of existing on-dock rail capacity. The end result will be an additional 155 metres of wharf added to the northwest end of the terminal.

As well as work on the terminal, the existing viewing area will be converted to a secure storage lot for empty containers.

News of the expansion was welcomed by elected officials from all levels of government.

“The development of Prince Rupert’s intermodal gateway business has been responsible for a gradual but unmistakable transformation of our city’s economy. The expansion of Fairview Container Terminal has been hotly anticipated. Its completion will bring much-needed employment growth and additional municipal revenues to our growing port city,” said Prince Rupert Mayor Lee Brain.

“The growth and diversification of the port industry on B.C.’s North Coast has had a positive impact on the quality of life for those who call this region home. The expansion of Prince Rupert’s container operations is more great news for our gateway economy. The Port of Prince Rupert and Maher Terminals are not only world leaders in facilitating trade, they are good partners — providing opportunities for families in our communities,” added North Coast MLA Jennifer Rice.

As well, two First Nations leaders on the North Coast gave their public support to the commencement of expansion during the announcement.

“The Metlakatla First Nation has experienced first-hand the positive impact of Prince Rupert’s Fairview Container Terminal operation. An expansion to the terminal will continue to help our people achieve access to the training, specialized skills and job opportunities that make Prince Rupert’s workforce the envy of Northern BC. We anticipate the Port of Prince Rupert maintaining its high standards of environmental sustainability and active community engagement as this project is developed,” said Metlakatla Chief Harold Leighton.

“Our community has demonstrated a model of economic partnership with the Port of Prince Rupert that should be a model to others. The jobs and skills training enabled by the container terminal has meant members of our nation have benefitted. We are interested in finding even more new and original ways of connecting with future benefits as the terminal grows,” added acting Gitxaala Chief Clarence Innes.