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Settling In: Highlighting 50 Years of Kitimat's History

Kitimat's Economic Potential

"Industrial growth will depend on what is found inland when research shows what resources the north half of B.C. must ship to world markets via a tidewater port.  Exactly how and on what time schedule Kitimat's future will develop cannot be predicted.  That it has a fine industrial and transport future and will be an administrative and key city for a very large productive region is something that will be proven by two inevitables - time and enterprise."

Howard T. Mitchell, President of Mitchell Press, Vancouver and Publisher, Northern Sentinel

Excerpt from the Canadian Geographical Journal, November 1959


Kitimat continues to work for its economic future.  The District of Kitimat has taken a proactive role in setting the town’s path by concentrating efforts in economic development and attempting to protect what is already in place.  The competitive advantages of the Kitimat Valley – the essential part in the Northwest Transportation and Trade Corridor is promoted.  Kitimat is a gateway to the Pacific – a deep-sea port with excellent overland transportation connections.

Beginning in 1988, the District of Kitimat pursued port development for a terminal for forest products and other possibilities.  PRM Resources Ltd. was attracted by the port capabilities and good road and rail access.  The company completed preliminary studies in 1990 for a copper smelter located between the smelter and the methanol plant.  This smelter remains a possibility for Kitimat to this day. 

Other enterprises for Kitimat over the years included the Clague Mountain ski study of 1971 and the Elizabeth Arms Hotel for City Centre in 1968.

Elizabeth Arms sign

The hotel shopping plaza which never materialized was a proposed future development at the corner of Haisla Boulevard and Lahakas, September 25, 1971.