Proposed Centerm Expansion Project

About the project

The Centerm Expansion Project is a proposed series of improvements to Centerm container terminal and port roads. It includes improvements at Centerm container terminal to help meet anticipated near-term demand for containers to be shipped through Vancouver. In addition, the application for a project permit includes the proposed South Shore Access Project to improve infrastructure that would benefit the entire south shore port area. Collectively, they are referred to as the project.

Subject to regulatory approvals, the on-terminal improvements would increase the maximum container handling capacity at Centerm by two-thirds, from 900,000 twenty-foot equivalent unit containers (TEUs) to 1.5 million TEUs. The project would include an increase to the terminal footprint by approximately 15 percent and reconfiguration of the terminal to increase the container capacity of Centerm.

The South Shore Access Project includes a new Centennial Road Overpass and an extension to Waterfront Road. These improvements would contribute to the port authority’s long-term objective to improve goods movement and access along the entire south shore port area. The improvements would address road congestion and increase efficiency within the port by removing three at-grade rail crossings for port users, and removing port-related traffic from surrounding roads, while providing a continuous port road to Highway 1.

The proposed Centerm Expansion Project is subject to review under the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s project and environmental review process. The proposed project is in the application review stage of this process. Review the application, and technical and environmental studies, on the project permit application page.

For more information about the proposed Centerm Expansion Project please visit portvancouver.com/centermexpansion.

Consultation and engagement

Application Review Phase – Round 2 Public Consultation May 15 to June 2, 2017

From May 15 to June 2, 2017, the project team consulted with the public and stakeholders as part of the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s Project and Environmental Review process. Consultation methods included a discussion guide and feedback form available at porttalk.ca/centermexpansion, as well as two open houses.

During this round of consultation, participants were invited to learn more about and provide feedback on proposed project construction activities, details regarding a proposed community investment program, and how we considered feedback from Round 1 consultation (February 20 – March 24, 2017).

How your input will be used

The project team will consider feedback received during this consultation period to refine proposed project mitigations, plans to minimize potential construction-related impacts and options for a proposed community investment program. Input provided will be considered as part of the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s Project and Environmental Review process.

Application Review Phase – Round 1 Public Consultation February 20 to March 24, 2017

From February 20 to March 24, 2017, the project team consulted with the public and stakeholders as part of the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s Project and Environmental Review process. Consultation methods included a discussion guide and feedback form on available at porttalk.ca/centermexpansion, as well as three drop-in and two small group meetings.

During this round of consultation, participants were invited to learn more about and provide feedback on the project’s proposed design of on-terminal and off-terminal works, results of technical and environmental studies, anticipated construction activities, and a proposed community investment program. You can read the Round 1 discussion guide, summary report and consideration report here (consideration report to be posted the week of May 15, 2017).

If you would like to receive regular updates about the proposed Centerm Expansion Project, please email us at centermexpansion@portvancouver.com or subscribe to our mailing list.

About the project

The Centerm Expansion Project is a proposed series of improvements to Centerm container terminal and port roads. It includes improvements at Centerm container terminal to help meet anticipated near-term demand for containers to be shipped through Vancouver. In addition, the application for a project permit includes the proposed South Shore Access Project to improve infrastructure that would benefit the entire south shore port area. Collectively, they are referred to as the project.

Subject to regulatory approvals, the on-terminal improvements would increase the maximum container handling capacity at Centerm by two-thirds, from 900,000 twenty-foot equivalent unit containers (TEUs) to 1.5 million TEUs. The project would include an increase to the terminal footprint by approximately 15 percent and reconfiguration of the terminal to increase the container capacity of Centerm.

The South Shore Access Project includes a new Centennial Road Overpass and an extension to Waterfront Road. These improvements would contribute to the port authority’s long-term objective to improve goods movement and access along the entire south shore port area. The improvements would address road congestion and increase efficiency within the port by removing three at-grade rail crossings for port users, and removing port-related traffic from surrounding roads, while providing a continuous port road to Highway 1.

The proposed Centerm Expansion Project is subject to review under the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s project and environmental review process. The proposed project is in the application review stage of this process. Review the application, and technical and environmental studies, on the project permit application page.

For more information about the proposed Centerm Expansion Project please visit portvancouver.com/centermexpansion.

Consultation and engagement

Application Review Phase – Round 2 Public Consultation May 15 to June 2, 2017

From May 15 to June 2, 2017, the project team consulted with the public and stakeholders as part of the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s Project and Environmental Review process. Consultation methods included a discussion guide and feedback form available at porttalk.ca/centermexpansion, as well as two open houses.

During this round of consultation, participants were invited to learn more about and provide feedback on proposed project construction activities, details regarding a proposed community investment program, and how we considered feedback from Round 1 consultation (February 20 – March 24, 2017).

How your input will be used

The project team will consider feedback received during this consultation period to refine proposed project mitigations, plans to minimize potential construction-related impacts and options for a proposed community investment program. Input provided will be considered as part of the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s Project and Environmental Review process.

Application Review Phase – Round 1 Public Consultation February 20 to March 24, 2017

From February 20 to March 24, 2017, the project team consulted with the public and stakeholders as part of the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s Project and Environmental Review process. Consultation methods included a discussion guide and feedback form on available at porttalk.ca/centermexpansion, as well as three drop-in and two small group meetings.

During this round of consultation, participants were invited to learn more about and provide feedback on the project’s proposed design of on-terminal and off-terminal works, results of technical and environmental studies, anticipated construction activities, and a proposed community investment program. You can read the Round 1 discussion guide, summary report and consideration report here (consideration report to be posted the week of May 15, 2017).

If you would like to receive regular updates about the proposed Centerm Expansion Project, please email us at centermexpansion@portvancouver.com or subscribe to our mailing list.

Do you have a question or comment about the proposed Centerm Expansion Project? Share your thoughts in the space below.

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  • It is my understanding that the area around the proposed Centerm Expansion will be dredged. The dredgeate might have contaminants that have settled there over the years. I have been told that it is common to dump dredgeate off Point Grey. Is this where the dredgeate will end up? I am concerned that this is close to salmon migration routes as they make their way to the mouth of the Fraser. We are seeing very low numbers of salmon for some runs in the Fraser this year, so I am worried about the impact on the fish.

    Anilou asked 23 days ago

    Thank you for your question. The Centerm Expansion Project recently submitted an application to Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) for a Disposal at Sea permit under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999. The process for testing the quality of dredged material, prior to being removed or taken for disposal, is extensive, and any dredged sediments relocated to the Point Grey Site would be thoroughly tested, and subject to permit conditions specified by ECCC. For more information on ECCC’s disposal at sea process, please refer to: https://www.ec.gc.ca/iem-das/default.asp?lang=En&n=767336D8-1

    The proposed Centerm Expansion Project also requires an Authorization under section 35(2)(b) of the Fisheries Act. It is expected that the Authorization will include timing windows specified by Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) to protect sensitive species at vulnerable times. The least-risk window for Burrard Inlet, recommended by DFO to protect marine species (including salmon), is from August 16 to February 28. Dredging and disposal activities for the Centerm Expansion Project are proposed to take place within that window. 

  • I've lived for years across from Crab Park and the images you show in the shade study are not accurate. I've never seen a ship sticking out westward the way those images show. Could you please confirm if those "Current" images have been adjusted and photoshop to add in the ship?

    AY asked 24 days ago

    Thank you for your enquiry. The images referenced in the view and shade study are graphic representations that depict the view of Centerm when a larger vessel is at berth, using the existing mooring dolphin to the west. The mooring dolphin has been used periodically since it was installed in 2012, and its use is determined by industry-driven factors (including changes in shipping lines).

    The Centerm Expansion Project would extend the operating berth westward to replace the existing mooring dolphin, which currently accommodates larger vessels. As noted in our consultation discussion guides and in the project permit application, most of the growth in capacity at Centerm would be through an increase in the size of vessels, rather than the number of vessels visiting the terminal. The western expansion of Centerm to the end of the mooring dolphin is required to increase terminal capacity and efficiency, and to accommodate larger vessels. 

  • Is it not possible to expand outward into Burrard Inlet, instead of westward? This will significantly impact the view from Portside Park, as well as the view from our home in Gastown which was purchased largely because of the ocean and mountain views.

    Ashleigh asked 4 months ago

    Thank you for your question.  An alternative siting report, submitted as part of the project permit application, details each of the alternatives considered for the project. The report recommends extending the operating berth to the existing dolphin at the west end of the terminal. This is critical to achieving terminal capacity, while not disrupting terminal operations during construction. The proposed expansion does not require a change to the vessel mooring locations. Expanding the intermodal yard exclusively to the east would fail to connect to the rail network at a key location, limiting future access to all rail networks. Obtaining 3000 foot track lengths in the intermodal yard is critical to achieving the required terminal capacity, and this component could not be accommodated with only an eastern expansion.

    Should the project proceed, the view from the park would be very similar to the view today, when a vessel is at berth. There are images of the view from CRAB Park at Portside with and without the proposed project, available online. Additional images from different perspectives are available in the view and shade study component of the project permit application. The viewscape analysis on pages 17-23 of this study pertains to CRAB Park at Portside.  

  • Why is the Centerm Terminal expansion necessary?

    Tam asked 11 months ago

    Trade of goods shipped in containers through Canada’s west coast is increasing. Third-party international consulting firm Ocean Shipping Consultants is forecasting that container traffic through Canada’s Pacific Gateway will increase by nearly three million 20-foot equivalent unit (TEUs) containers by 2030 (view the report).