Bécancour — “You had to be visionary, in 1968, to develop an industrial park and port in a city that had just been born. And it needed to be significantly ahead of its time in making, over the years, one of the largest industrial parks of Canada.”
This is how the current leadership of the Company in the industrial park and port of Bécancour (SPIPB) have pointed out, on Thursday, the 50 years of existence of that governmental entity at a reception which was attended by some of their predecessors, including the former presidents of the board of directors, Henri Boudreau and Jean-Guy Paré, as well as the ex-ceo of Pierre Clouâtre and Jean-Pierre Nepveu.
The chairman and managing director, Maurice Richard, was pleased to tell the story of the creation of the industrial park, which is the result of the abandonment of the project of steel industry, Sidbec plant in Bécancour.
The Company then bought 7000 acres of land from the general Trust of Canada, in the same period that the bridge Laviolette was built.
In 1970, we are witnessing the implantation of the first company in the industrial park, Biraghi. In the following three years, a street providing access to the St. Lawrence river will see the day while it will begin construction of the autoroute30 and the first phase of the port.
Among the highlights, there is the arrival of the Bécancour Smelter, at a cost of $ 1.3 billion. A half-century later, the plant is immersed in a labour dispute.
“The port is in full expansion”, said Mr Richard, who is not a little proud of the 650 000 trees planted over the years on vacant land within the territory of activity.
In 2018, approximately 2500 people who work in the 20 companies in the industrial park.
“Yes, we had some failures, but it is resilient. The future is very promising and the best of all worlds is within our reach”, said the chairman of the board of directors, Jean Poliquin, who has spoken of 20 active projects “of which eight have options”.
In his speech, he described the many advantages of the industrial park and port of Bécancour, including its geographical position, “exceptional”.
Moreover, its deep-water port accessible year-round, the almost unlimited availability of water needed for industrial processes and its direct links, by road or by rail, with the main industrial regions of the american continent make it an exceptional choice for the industry.
In addition, the convergence in Bécancour, three networks Hydro-Québec’s hydroelectric, two of which are among the largest in the world, are in the industrial park and port a website providing an energy supply more reliable and more competitive in North America.
The presence of a network of natural gas a secure, high-capacity, affordable price and availability of steam also allows a variety of energy supply “out of the ordinary”.
For September, Maurice Richard announced the holding of the doors open event to mark this 50th anniversary.
“The industrial park, it is the DNA of Bécancour,” said the mayor Jean-Guy Dubois.