Stonepeak Wyoming project cleared

North America-dedicated Stonepeak is building a rail terminal to move crude oil from Canada to Illinois.

Local and state officials in Wyoming have granted fund manager Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners permission to go ahead with a project to stock and transport crude oil.

The US state approved construction of a rail terminal in Casper, the second-largest city in Wyoming with a population of 55,000, according to a press announcement.

Stonepeak, facility manager Casper Transloading (CTRAN) and crude oil marketer and distributor Cogent Energy Solutions, are developing the asset, named the ‘Casper Crude to Rail Terminal’ (CCR).

CCR will move crude oil from the 1,717-mile ‘Express-Platte Pipeline System’ starting in Alberta, Canada, and running to Wood River, Illinois. Spectra Energy bought the Express-Platte System from Borealis Infrastructure and Kinder Morgan for $1.49 billion in December.

Spectra is a natural gas infrastructure company. Borealis is the infrastructure investment arm of the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System (OMERS). Midstream service provider Kinder Morgan completed the transaction via its publicly traded Kinder Morgan Energy Partners.

The terminal will be adjacent to the Casper Natrona County International Airport. BNSF Railway will operate the rail. Casper is a crude oil refining centre for the US Western region.

The cost of building CCR was not disclosed. The Wyoming Business Council, Casper Area Economic Development Alliance and Wyoming Department of Transportation (WYDOT) signed off on the construction of CCR, which is scheduled for completion in spring 2014.

Stonepeak senior managing director Michael Dorrell, based in New York, called CCR “consistent with our strategy”. Stonepeak has also invested in a saltwater desalination plant in Carlsbad, California, a power plant and a terminal and barge business in the US Pacific Northwest.

Stonepeak recently closed its maiden offering, the mid-market North America-focused Stonepeak Infrastructure Fund, on $1.65 billion.