Stu Salkeld, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, ECA Review @1:18pm published at 2:35pm
Alberta BioBord's conceptual drawing of the MDF plant to be built near Stettler, AB. ECA Review/Submitted Stu Salkeld, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
A medium density fibreboard (MDF) company planning to build a plant near Stettler has announced it’s signed a land purchase agreement and is proceeding with the project, though it’s not the parcel of land they initially identified.
Alberta BioBord notified the ECA Review in a press release Mar. 22 that its plans to build a multi-phase MDF plant near Stettler are proceeding, with one difference: the parcel of land.
“Alberta BioBord Corp. today announces that it is proceeding with its projects in Stettler County, Alberta. The company has signed a land purchase agreement on a full quarter section situated in Stettler County that has excellent highway and railway access and is sufficient in size and layout to meet all development requirements. The initial application for rezoning has already been filed and the application for the first phase pellet mill development permit is being prepared for filing.”
Alberta BioBord President and CEO George Clark stated by phone Mar. 24 the initial site, south of Stettler near the municipal airport, was a great site but was already earmarked for residential development.
The CEO stated Alberta BioBord instead found a site northeast of Stettler on the east edge of Hwy. #56 and south edge of RR #392 that is ideal. He noted the development will take place in the southeast corner of the quarter section.
County of Stettler Reeve Larry Clarke said the municipality has already been on the site with Alberta BioBord representatives.
“The developer has submitted an application to our Planning & Development department,” stated Clarke’s email.
“Staff met with representatives of Alberta BioBord at the prospective site this morning, and we look forward to working through the regulatory compliance process with them. The County of Stettler is committed to growing our local economy and excited by the possibility of attracting new projects to our region.”
Town of Stettler Mayor Sean Nolls told the ECA Review in an email Mar. 23 the new site “provides a lot of advantages.”
“We are always excited about the opportunity to attract business to our community, and we look forward to continuing to collaborate with Alberta Biobord and the County of Stettler during this development process,” stated Nolls in his email.
“We believe that the land selected by Alberta BioBord provides a lot of advantages in the interest of good planning.”
Alberta BioBord also confirmed the company has reached an initial agreement with engineers. “In keeping with these developments, Alberta BioBord has also advanced the project design work necessary to prepare for construction by signing a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with TR Canada E&C, Inc. as the engineering contractor,” stated the press release.
"Alberta BioBord is working its way towards construction of our pellet plant first, followed by the Medium Density Fibreboard (MDF) plant," said Clark. "By securing land, filing our zoning application and signing an MOU with TR Canada to do the engineering work, we are sending a strong message to Stettler County and the Town of Stettler, the province of Alberta and the marketplace that Alberta BioBord is steadily moving towards putting hundreds of Albertans back to work. The acquisition of our land is a huge step in showing the marketplace that this project is steadily moving towards a final investment decision.
"We are very excited about these partnerships, we have already established good working relationships with TR Canada and the Town and County of Stettler. We recently opened a Stettler office to begin conversations with the residents of Stettler and Stettler County as well as their elected representatives about our proposal. We've had a great start to those conversations and are very encouraged by the reaction by everyone we've talked to."
Alberta BioBord stated at a County of Stettler meeting Mar. 10 they’d like to begin construction early this summer.