Peace River North MLA Pat Pimm says, "The oil and gas sector is such a huge contributor to not only the Peace region, but the entire province," adding, "improving any infrastructure that will help the local worker do their job more efficiently and safely is a great project."
Work planned for this year will focus on improving drainage, in an effort to have the roads ready for work early next year. The major improvements to the road are planned for June 2012, and are expected to be finished by September 2012. Those include upgrading parts of the road to be wider and stronger with a gravel surface, including kilometre 30 – 40 and 67 – 68.
As a result of the work, the province hopes travel time will be reduced, the drive will be smoother and safer both for workers and travellers, and visibility will be improved.
A $5.4 million contract for the work has been awarded to Kledo Construction Ltd., based out of the Northern Rockies Regional Municipality. It is estimated that this project will create over 30 jobs throughout the construction.
This work is part of an upgrade project announced in 2008. Fort Nelson Mayor Bill Streeper is glad the work is finally being done, adding it's been a long-time coming.
"Not only will the upgrade establish a much needed safer and smoother link between Fort Nelson and the oil and gas resources, our local people have become essential to the project – boosting our economy and livelihood."