The once vacant lot that once housed the Eastgate Shopping Center on Oak Street is now filled with trailers, trucks and equipment for Enbridge’s pipeline replacement project. Leader photo/CRAIG HAUPERT
The vacant lot that once housed the Eastgate Shopping Center on Oak Street is now filled with trailers, trucks and equipment for Enbridge’s pipeline replacement project.
Leader photo/CRAIG HAUPERT

Archived Story

Niles hopes to benefit from Enbridge pipeline project

Published 4:10pm Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Downtown Niles businesses are aiming to capitalize on the hundreds of workers that will be in the area over the next few months working on the Enbridge Line 6B replacement project.

Jason Manshum, of Enbridge community relations, said approximately 600 workers would be in the Niles area over the duration of the project. Enbridge has set up a staging area at the site of the former Eastgate Shopping Center on Oak Street in Niles. Work is expected to continue through November.

Lisa Croteau, of Niles DDA, said Niles merchants have gotten together to create a coupon book that will be distributed to employees of the Canadian oil company. A calendar featuring Niles events will also be given to the employees.

“It’s all about getting people to come downtown and make an impact,” Croteau said. “It is way cool to have that kind of influx of people even if it’s just temporary because their money will be permanent.”

In addition to the coupon book, the Four Flags Area Chamber of Commerce has planned a welcome party for Enbridge workers from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Aug. 21. The chamber will provide a connection to local businesses that will provide for the needs of the workers, including laundry, grocery, lodging and more.

The welcome party for ages 21 and older will be held in conjunction with The Kar Club’s Bring It Cruise In Car Show. The chamber will provide alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks for purchase and will be giving away a limited number of swag bags to visitors.

The project is the second phase of a 285-mile pipe replacement project stretching from Griffith, Ind., to Marysville, Mich.

Another crew of around 600 people is working in Stockbridge. Crews are working from east to west.

Work began in the Niles area in early July.

Manshum said roughly 60 percent of the employees are contractors specialized in pipeline work, while the remaining 40 percent are “local workers that we get from the trade halls or the local unions.”

Last year, Enbridge replaced 75 miles of segments as part of the first phase of the project. The 210-mile balance will be replaced by the end of 2013.

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