Nova project takes another step forward

Nova Chemicals Corp. is closer to completing another piece of the regulatory groundwork connected to a $900-million polyethylene expansion.

Nova Chemicals Corp. is closer to completing another piece of the regulatory groundwork connected to a $900-million polyethylene expansion.

Lacombe County council voted on Thursday to forward to Alberta’s Transportation Minister for approval a Nova request to close a road allowance to make way for a new rail yard.

The $30-million project will provide space for 450 cars to supply the proposed plant addition.

Nova requested the closure of the road allowance — which would be sandwiched between the petrochemical plant’s existing rail yard and the planned addition — to make it easier to manage safety and security.

If approved, the county would sell the eight-acre unused road allowance to Nova.

In the first major expansion in years, Nova plans to add a third polyethylene reactor in its Polyethylene 1 plant.

Related infrastructure will include a new pelletizer and finishing facilities, a flare stack, three cooling towers and an electrical substation.

With the new reactor able to produce an anticipated 950 million to 1.1 billion pounds (431 million to 500 million kg) of low-density polyethylene annually, the capacity of Nova’s polyethylene facilities will jump about 40 per cent.

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