Quesnel City Council has unanimously endorsed the Kluskus Connector.
Mayor Bob Simpson is quick to point out that this is not the full blown road to the NewGold project that became a concern to Vanderhoof…
“So you can see here they have reserves on either side of the Blackwater River or West Road River. And this small red section is what they’re proposing with a small crossing across the Blackwater River. It allows them to actually manage the infrastructure on the reserves on both sides, gives them a northern egress and also would, over time if NewGold is developed, give them access to the NewGold project if that road is built without another crossing over the Blackwater River.”
Simpson says this is not an alternate route to connect Quesnel to NewGold but he says the reason the Provincial Government is now seeking an endorsement from both Quesnel and Vanderhoof Councils is because of the original concerns that created.
That said, Simpson says the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations has said that it would put a provision in that this road would not be 9-axle capable…
“And the reason for that of course is as we default down to less and less wood and potentially mill closures, Vanderhoof doesn’t want to see their mill put at risk because wood can be moved from that area across a 9-axle bridge and come down our way.”
Simpson says Kluskus has been evacuated around 6 times in the past 10 years because of wildfires, including twice this year, and the band is just looking for an access egress from their territory to get north.