WATCH: Some spectacular pictures from the Fraser Valley, where BC Hydro is building a project that’s a blast from the past. Ted Chernecki has the story.
VANCOUVER – It’s one of the province’s largest construction projects in decades; the $725 million high-voltage line expansion stretching between Merritt and Coquitlam.
The line, which will stretch a total of 247 kilometers, parallels the existing, 40-year-old 500 kV line, which carries power from interior dams to the Fraser Valley.
After several years of work the project is expected to be finished this fall and will carry enough electricity to power 80,000 homes.
“The biggest challenge with this, this section of line is the actual terrain and the access into sites,” said Devin Dukeshire, transmission field operations manager. “We have 19 kilometres here and about 48 structures. Of the 48 structures, about 23 of them are helicopter-accessed, so anytime we need to get into site, we have to use helicopters.”
Simi Heer with BC Hydro says they are expecting demand to grow by about 40 per cent over the next 20 years and the current lines are reaching capacity.