The city is looking into new economic opportunities to make Lloydminster a transport hub.
A transload feasibility study is being done to determine the cost of a transload facility and whether it can be located in or around the city. A transload facility is a site where goods and shipments can be transferred from one mode of transportation to another.
Mayor Gerald Aalbers says the facility would help bolster the city’s main industries of oil and agriculture as well as expand into more industries diversifying the local economy.
“You also then have people in the investment world, they think outside the box from the perspective of what they have, maybe they are open to this idea. I think in today’s economic condition we have to be open to almost anything and everything as long as it’s legal and it makes sense for our community.”
The city has multiple forms of transportation in rail, highway and air transport and the facility would act as a nexus between the different modes.
The study will also look into the best place for the facility with Mayor Aalbers mentioning the best place for it would be as close to the city as possible.
“You want to be as close to the mainline as you can be and that is the CP line and CN lines here. The longer you have to move cars down a track that aren’t moving on a direct path that just adds to time and cost.”
It will also look into neighbouring municipalities for possible sites. Once the study is complete and if the facility is considered feasible then city staff will create a business plan for investors.
The city is awarding the study to DTCI which had the lowest bid of $82,335. The city has also secured up to $40,000 in funding from the Alberta Community and Regional Economic Support to cover costs for the study.
The study is expected to wrap up and be presented to city council by the end of December.