Catch a glimpse of the action

The Waneta Dam expansion project is drawing a crowd

by Colin Payne

On July 21, 2011, provincial officials, local government representatives and officials from the various corporations involved gathered at the Waneta Dam expansion construction site for the unveiling of a much-anticipated public viewing area.

The massive four-year, 335-megawatt, $900-million hydropower project has been drawing significant interest from the public—creating the need for a safe place where people could stop and view the progress of the project.

Situated above the confluence of the Pend d’Oreille and Columbia rivers, the viewing area features a platform with interpretive signage. It is a secure place for people to pull off the Waneta Highway to observe the project.

About 50 people attended the event, which included a short bus tour of the site and an unveiling ceremony for the viewing area.

BC Minister of Energy and Mines Rich Coleman was on hand and did the honours of unveiling the interpretive signage. He was joined on the stage by representatives from the project's partners, including the Ktunaxa Nation, Columbia Power, Columbia Basin Trust, Fortis BC, contractor SNC Lavalin and the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary.

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