Fort McMurray and the surrounding oil sands area has experienced substantial industrial growth and as a result the need for improved infrastructure has become a major issue for most of the large projects taking place in the area. In particular, many of the oil sands projects have expressed concern that power demands will increase dramatically and will not be fulfilled by the transmission system currently in place. As a result, the current system requires considerable upgrades and new construction is necessary to facilitate the forecasted demand.
The NE Loop project was established out of necessity to develop a comprehensive transmission circuit to supply the Husky Oil Sands project and eventually bring power to the Kearl Oil Sands projects. The project involved constructing over 100 km of single circuit 240 kV transmission line completed with the full construction of five greenfield substations and the retrofit of one brownfield substation.