Fraser Lake plans to open up Airbnbs in the village to accommodate families of workers who wish to stay outside the new Coastal Gas Link (CGL) work camp.
The Lejac camp near Fraser Lake will be built later this year and is expected to house around 700 labourers who will work on the CGL pipeline, TransCanada spokeswoman Suzanne Wilton told Lakes District News.
That number is an estimate for the camp’s peak capacity in 2020. The Vanderhoof camp will accommodate around 900 workers.
“[We’re] encouraging people to become involved if they can. The fact that some families will be coming and looking to rent and rent something furnished. It would be nice to see that we do have them available. And the word will be going out to that effect,” said Marilynn Reyden, president of the Fraser Lake & District Chamber of Commerce on Feb. 28.
“It would be up to people in Fraser Lake who are interested to contact Airbnb,” she added.
As the idea for renting out local homes to CGL workers was only raised by the chamber of commerce in late February, it is too early to estimate how many residents would be interested and how much they might charge.
“We would have a better view of what that would look like at a possible public meeting. At that point we’d have a better idea of how many people would be interested and how many places there are to rent out,” Reyden said.
The chamber wants to begin informing the public of the plan as soon as possible.
A pipeline work camp near Burns Lake is planned to be built in 2020 north of Tchesinkut Lake along 7 Mile Road. It is expected to accommodate 600 workers. Another camp is scheduled for next year just south of Houston.
The Fraser Lake community is also considering recreational options for CGL workers.
“We want to draw the camp residents into the town on Sundays because that’s their day off. Find out some way to entice them to local shops or workshops…There are a lot of artists and artisans in this area that can fill that void, possibly for artistic workshops. We have to reach out and find out what else people can offer, and in terms of outdoor activities.”