October 23, 2018

Fort McMurray West 500 kV Transmission Project Wins Gold for Project Financing in CCPPP’s 2018 National Awards for Innovation and Excellence in P3s

Projects in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario to be honoured at P3 2018 in Toronto on November 5

A 500-kilometre-long transmission line boosting power to northeastern Alberta has won gold in this year’s National Awards for Innovation and Excellence in Public-Private Partnerships.

Presented by The Canadian Council for Public-Private Partnerships (CCPPP) since 1998, the prestigious award will be handed out at CCPPP’s 26th annual conference – P3 2018 – on Monday, November 5 in Toronto at the Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel.

“CCPPP and its members congratulate the team involved in the Fort McMurray West 500 kV Transmission Project on winning gold for project financing in the 2018 National Awards for Innovation and Excellence in Public-Private Partnerships,” said Mark Romoff, president and CEO of CCPPP.

The Alberta mega-project is one of five winners across Canada selected for breaking new ground in how P3s are built, financed or deliver services, as well as their impact on boosting the economy, cost savings and creating more vibrant, inclusive communities. This project is one of only two gold award recipients this year. Read more

“These five projects represent the hard work and dedication of thousands of people across Canada who are making these critically important infrastructure projects a reality. Their exceptional leadership and innovative thinking are what continues to distinguish the Canadian P3 model as globally best-in-class,” Romoff said.

The partners involved in the Fort McMurray West 500 kV Transmission Project include: Alberta Electric System Operator and Alberta PowerLine Limited Partnership, a consortium of Canadian Utilities Ltd., Quanta Services CC Canada Ltd., Valard Construction LP and ATCO Electric.

“The development and implementation of a Competitive Process for the Fort McMurray West 500 kV Transmission Project was a significant undertaking,” said Pauline McLean, Director, Legal and Regulatory Affairs & Associate General Counsel with the Alberta Electric System Operator.

“It involved a number of people across our organization coming together and collaborating to deliver a highly successful and robust first of its kind process in Alberta, and first transmission infrastructure P3 to be procured in Canada. We are proud of our accomplishments and we are very humbled to receive this award.”

Fort McMurray West 500 kV Transmission Project (Project Financing Award): This vital power project, stretching 500 kilometres northeast from Edmonton, will increase the capacity and overall reliability of Alberta’s transmission system in order to meet booming demand in the Fort McMurray area when it becomes operational in 2019. This is also the first transmission infrastructure P3 to be procured in Canada.

The awards committee commended the project’s use of a “unique funding competition that took place after the route for the transmission line was finalized and regulatory approval had been granted, resulting in significant savings for the public.”

The competition resulted in a combination of medium- and long-term bonds priced to appeal to different investors and a dual tranche structure that created a very cost effective quarterly pay financing. Sponsors with upfront project development activities will be keenly interested in the ground-breaking approach Alberta has taken with this mega-project, the committee said.

At the time of award, the cost savings were estimated to be more than $400 million — approximately 25 per cent of total capital costs.

About the Canadian Council for Public-Private Partnerships

Established in 1993, CCPPP is a national not-for-profit non-partisan, member-based organization with broad representation from across the public and private sectors. Our mission is to collaborate with all levels of government and Indigenous communities to enable smart, innovative approaches to public infrastructure development and service delivery that achieve the best outcomes for Canadians. The council is a proponent of evidence-based public policy in support of P3s, facilitates the adoption of international best practices, and educates stakeholders and the community on the economic and social benefits of public-private partnerships.

For media inquiries, please contact:
Jennifer Robinson, Director, Communications and Media Relations
The Canadian Council for Public-Private Partnerships
416.861.0605 x210
jrobinson@pppcouncil.ca

Tara de Weerd, Manager, Public Affairs
AESO
403.539.2639
Tara.DeWeerd@aeso.ca