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Shell Canterra Road


Fort McMurray, Alberta



Transportation Planning

Shell Canada Ltd. wished to expand their mining operations within the Sharkbite lease area in Fort McMurray, Alberta.

Canterra Road is needed for continued access to the Jackpine Mine site and other mine areas operated by other companies farther east.

The Muskeg River Mine LOM (Life of Mine) Plan calls for the development of an overburden disposal area within the Sharkbite lease. A section of this disposal area will impact a portion of Canterra Road.  Thus, the road needed to be re-routed around the proposed Sharkbite Waste Overburden Disposal Area, starting east of the Muskeg River, along the Albian boundary with the Quarry of Ancestors, and then back to the existing Canterra Road, after the Sharkbite Waste Overburden Disposal Area has been by-passed.

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Project Highlights

Associated Engineering was retained to facilitate developing these expansion initiatives and to provide engineering design services for relocation of certain portions of Canterra Road within the Sharkbite Waste Overburden Disposal Area. The main design intent for the Canterra Road was to provide a safe and economical corridor, while providing the greatest mineable area for Shell’s planned expansion.

Two road alignments were initially developed that addressed the mine development needs for 2012 and 2016.  The design basis for the road alignments included the relocation of existing utilities and met all provincial and government regulations, standards and codes. A right-of-way (ROW) for a surface water diversion ditch was included in the overall roadway ROW. As well, an exclusive ATCO power line ROW and gas ROW needed to be relocated within the ROW along the proposed roadway alignment and remain on the south side to avoid crossing requirements.

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