More than $500,000 awarded to Northern B.C. economic development projects

Projects to benefit include Fort St. John airport and recreational facilities improvements

Prince George Citizen
August 12, 2019

Fort St John North Peace Regional Airport-vantage
North Peace Regional Airport, Fort St. John. Image by Vantage Airport Group via Alaska Highway News

Northern Development Initiative Trust (NDIT) has approved over $500,000 in grants for economic development projects across Northern B.C.

In all, four projects will receive support through NDIT's economic diversification program with the North Peace Airport Society getting the largest amount at $250,000 for runway rehabilitation at the airport in Fort St. John.

Pavement on one of the airport's two runways has not been upgraded in over 20 years is on routes for three commercial carriers.

The next-largest grant is $125,000, which will go Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine to equip the newly built Upper Skeena Recreation Centre (USRC) in Hazelton.

Specifically, the money will go towards meeting room equipment, bench seating, bleachers, floor covering, fitness mats, among other assets.

NDIT has previously provided $250,000 for the initial construction of the USRC.

The Metlakatla First Nation near Prince Rupert is receiving $79,094 to repair three suspension bridges and a 72-foot viewing tower on the 21-kilometre Metlakatla Wilderness Trail.

The trail has been closed since 2015 due to safety concerns following a severe storm. It drew more than 1,000 visitors per year when it was opened. Re-opening is slated for May 2020.

And $76,760 is going to the Williams Lake Indian Band for renovations to the Elizabeth Grouse Gymnasium, including new flooring, new air conditioning and heating systems, commercial grade kitchen equipment and new bathroom fixtures.

The NDIT board of directors approved the grants on July 23. The next deadline for applications is October 31.

Copyright © Western Investor

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