Construction has been underway for nine months at our Westridge Marine Terminal in Burnaby, as crews work to build the new three-berth dock complex. 

Most construction is occurring from the water using floating equipment such as marine derricks, barges, tugs and work boats.

The in-water construction to date has included pile driving to accommodate new berths and trestles, as well as foreshore extension.

A critical piece of equipment being used on site is the D.B. General, the largest revolving derrick barge on the West Coast of North America. Aboard the D.B. General is the MENCK hammer that is being used to install the in-water piles.

Trans Mountain is taking an innovative approach to help reduce potential noise from pile driving activities by using a ‘noise shroud’ to cover the hammer that drives piles, which dampen the sound of hammer impact by 65 to 95 per cent.

In addition, an underwater bubble curtain is being used to reduce the pile driving noise beneath the surface of the water, in accordance with the comprehensive Environmental Protection Plan and Noise Management Plan for Westridge.

Another important activity that has been underway this year is work on the foreshore expansion and bulkhead wall. Crews installed sheets for three of 11 sheet pile cells before stopping mid-March at the close of the least risk window for the protection of fishes that may be migrating along the shoreline.

Crews recently planned and executed the relocation of the existing Vapour Combustion Unit (VCU) and corresponding systems for vapour collection, which was a major milestone for early works at the Terminal.

The VCU was moved 130 metres east of its original location to create room for the foreshore extension. The execution of the relocation was a complex 13-day operation that required six months of planning.

One of the most important elements of the expansion of shipping operations at Westridge Marine Terminal is a new vapour recovery system to control emissions and odours.

The VRU will capture the vapours associated with ship loading. Instead of the vapours being incinerated, the new system will re-liquefy the gases and direct the produced liquids back into the loading tankers. This means that even with more vessels being loaded, there will be a net decrease in emissions at Westridge. 

Activities in the first part of 2018 also included preparatory work for the Tunnel Portal at Westridge, which will continue as we move into the second half of this year.

Measures are in place at Westridge to minimize impacts of construction activities on the public and the environment, including comprehensive Environmental Protection Plans that detail the actions required to ensure protection of land, plants, wildlife, fish and the marine environment in all phases of the Project.

For example, Trans Mountain has established a marine mammal exclusion zone for marine construction. Active marine impact piling must stop if mammals are observed within the zone and piling can not start again until no mammals have been observed within the zone for at least 30 minutes.

As part of NEB Condition 48, we’ve developed a Navigation and Navigation Safety Plan to manage and mitigate the marine impacts of construction. In order to protect workers and marine waterway users in the area, the work area is defined by a floating construction safety boom, which is marked with appropriate navigation lighting and controls.

As construction proceeds, we’ll regularly communicate and update all marine waterway users through a variety of methods, and continue to share new information with our neighbours and address questions and concerns.

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