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WVFA nears completion

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Dry Bulk,

The Port of Vancouver USA’s West Vancouver Freight Access project (WVFA) is a decade-long, US$250 million effort by the port to create jobs and generate economic benefit by investing in freight rail infrastructure.

The overall project consists of 21 individual projects to improve freight rail movement through the port and along the BNSF Railway and Union Pacific Railroad mainlines connecting the Pacific Northwest to major rail hubs in Chicago and Houston, and from Canada to Mexico.

After several years of construction, the port and its contractors are building the final two contracts for WVFA, which are slated to be complete by early 2018.

Kinder Morgan moves a variety of dry bulks at the Port of Vancouver, including copper and bentonite clay. Project 7 demolishes Kinder Morgan’s existing facility and builds a larger facility in a new location, with a new conveyor system connecting to the existing storage building.

Kinder Morgan’s new, larger facility will allow the company to unload its products in a covered, enclosed area. This helps minimise dust from copper and other minerals during the transfer process. Project 7 is scheduled for completion late this year.

The port has many tenants and customers who move bulk products such as grain, fertilizer, minerals and steel. Efficiency is critical for bulk businesses, and one of the ways to improve this is through efficient loading and unloading of products and the use of unit trains, which are freight trains carrying the same cars loaded with the same commodity with the same origin and destination. That’s where Project 11B comes in. By constructing a new lead track from our south entrance and additional load tracks for grain trains, this project increases the port’s rail capacity, specifically for our biggest customer by volume – United Grain Corp. – which moved more than 5 million metric t of grain in 2016. Project 11B is expected to be complete by early 2018.

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