Published On: Sat, Feb 16th, 2019

Ontario govt okays NextBridge’s East-West Tie Transmission Line Project

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The Ontario government has designated NextBridge Infrastructure as the licensed transmitter to take up the East-West Tie Transmission Line Project in the Canadian state.

In this connection, NextBridge Infrastructure, a partnership between affiliates of NextEra Energy Canada, Enbridge, and Omers Infrastructure, has secured an order in council and ministerial directive from the Ontario government, which pave way for the construction of the new 450km or so long transmission line project.

NextBridge Infrastructure prevailed over Hydro One and other bidders for the transmission line project in Ontario. For the record, Hydro One proposed to build the 400km Lake Superior Link project.

The selected project – which is the double-circuit 230-kilovolt East-West Tie Transmission Line Project, will be built from Thunder Bay to Wawa to supply power to the northwestern part of the state.

It will run from the Wawa Transformer Station (TS) to the Lakehead Transfer Station in the Municipality of Shuniah, near Thunder Bay, with a connection nearly mid-way at the Marathon Transfer Station.

The East-West Tie Transmission Line Project will be a 450km or so long double-circuit 230-kilovolt line.

The East-West Tie Transmission Line Project will be a 450km or so long double-circuit 230-kilovolt line. Photo courtesy of fancycrave1/Pixabay.

Greg Rickford – Ontario Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, commenting on the East-West Tie Transmission Line Project, said: “Maintaining reliability and cost efficiency is a top priority for our government. The East-West Tie Line has long been identified as a priority project to provide a consistent supply of electricity that supports economic growth, job creation, and resource development in northwestern Ontario.

“Unfortunately, the Ontario Energy Board’s review process has taken longer than expected, putting the timely construction of this necessary project at risk and potentially increasing costs for electricity customers.

“NextBridge is the right choice to quickly and efficiently complete the East-West Tie Line. NextBridge has finished the preliminary work necessary to complete the project, it has the support of local communities and First Nation and Métis partners, and the project sets in motion opportunities to create local employment for over 200 Indigenous people.”

In the coming weeks, NextBridge Infrastructure will approach project partners, communities and landowners and will also focus on getting the final permits and initiate pre-constructional activities for the new transmission project in Ontario.

Commenting on the East-West Tie Transmission Line Project, Jennifer Tidmarsh – Project Director of NextBridge Infrastructure, said: “NextBridge is ready to get to work.”

“We have worked in collaboration with Indigenous and local communities and right-of-way landowners for the past five years to develop this important project that will deliver economic benefits for generations to come.”

The Bamkushwada consortium, which comprises six First Nation communities, is expected to contribute to the East-West Tie Transmission Line Project by the acquisition of a 20% stake at the end of the construction stage.

Peter Collins – Fort William First Nation Chief Peter Collins, commenting on the East-West Tie Transmission Line Project, said: “As President of Bamkushwada, I welcome the government’s decision to confirm that NextBridge will construct the East‐West Tie Project.

“This is more than an electricity transmission project. It’s an economic partnership between industry and our First Nation communities that builds capacity and provides employment opportunities for over 300 Indigenous people.”

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