Contract awarded for Watson Island demolition

NRI Group is in the planning stages with Stantec to determine which portions of Watson Island will be decommissioned

Watson Island has found its industrial grim reaper.

More than a few things may be headed to the mechanical afterlife through the decommissioning of a very large portion of what was once the Watson Island Pulp Mill. Its assets will be removed by NRI Group, an Ontario-based asset management firm familiar with paper mill sites throughout North America.

“We are pleased to be able to move forward with the decommissioning of the pulp mill, which will enable the site to be repurposed so that Watson Island can again contribute to the economy of Prince Rupert,” said Mayor Lee Brain last week.

Currently NRI Group, who earlier signed the demolition contract with the city, is in the planning stages with Stantec, an engineering consultant, to determine which portions of Watson Island will be decommissioned as part of a complete two-year process that will begin on the island immediately.

“Right now they’re doing preliminary work on budgets and estimates and that type of thing and what the plan is exactly going to look like,” said the mayor.

To whom the assets may be sold to and what will be retained is also part of the planning process.

There are some areas that won’t be affected by the decommissioning and have been identified as being in good standing condition, such as office buildings, but the majority of the site will be decommissioned.

What the city would like to see happen with that land is still up in the air due to a legal dispute between WatCo, a wholly-owned company of Colonial Coal, and the city regarding who owns the land.

“We still have a certificate of pending litigation (CPL) on the island through our legal claim with WatCo … Basically until that CPL is removed, we can’t really sell the island right now,” said Mayor Brain.

“It’s a very attractive piece of property. It has huge strategic value for the region. It’s got a wharf access, rail access and truck access. If the site were to be cleaned up and flattened and ready for industrial use, we believe that it could really contribute to Prince Rupert’s economy, get the tax base expanded again and be a really good compliment to other industries that are trying to settle here.”

 

Just Posted

Bachrach nominated by NDP for federal election

The Smithers mayor won on the first ballot with 446 of 797 votes

Bridgeview Marine builds fishing fleet for Queen Charlotte Lodge

Since October, the Prince Rupert-based company has been working on nine vessels for the lodge

B.C. port workers set to strike on Monday in Vancouver

A strike at two container terminals would affect Canadian trade to Asia

Service honours Marlene Swift’s life and work with North Coast Victims Services

RCMP, Prince Rupert residents attend a ceremony for Swift from inside the Salvation Army on May 23

Police say it’s “impressive” no arrests were made after Raptors celebrations

Toronto will play the Western Conference champion Golden State Warriors next

Social media giants in hot seat as politicians consider regulations in Ottawa

Committee members will also grill representatives from Facebook, Twitter

Wildfire crews watching for dangerous wind shift in High Level, Alta.

The Chuckegg Creek fire is raging out of control about three kilometres southwest of the town

UN urges Canada to take more vulnerable Mexican migrants from Central America

The request comes as the United States takes a harder line on its Mexican border

Mistrial declared in Jamie Bacon murder plot trial

Bacon was on trial for counselling to commit the murder of Person X

B.C. VIEWS: Money-laundering melodrama made for TV

Public inquiry staged to point fingers before 2021 election

Canadian homebuyers escaping high housing costs by moving to secondary cities

In British Columbia, exurbs have grown in the Hope Valley and Kamloops

Feds lay out proposed new rules for voice, video recorders in locomotives

Transport Canada wants to limit use of recorders to if a crew’s actions led to a crash

Most Read