When Bob Merta heard a story on CBC radio about the geographical centre of the province, his interest was piqued, but it was left at that.
A few years later, he found a renewed interest for this geographical centre of the province and took it upon himself to try and pinpoint the exact centre of British Columbia, claimed by Vanderhoof.
Having a background in forestry, Merta had an understanding of how to use a mapping system to pinpoint the location.
Once he entered the different points in, Merta said the process was fairly quick.
“The thought just came to my mind and I acted on it the same day,” Merta said.
“After I got the original idea, to do the average latitude and longitude, it took me the better part of that day.”
What Merta found was the geographic centre of B.C. was not in fact not Vanderhoof.
“It is actually quite a bit different than what Vanderhoof was claiming,” Merta said.
“The latitude and longitude averages intersect closer to the Burns Lake area.”
Merta said he was somewhat surprised at the response he received for his discovery.
“My family was teasing me, no one had contacted me regarding this in a few weeks and suddenly I got responses from CBC and the radio stations wanted an interview as well,” he explained.
As for Vanderhoof still claiming the centre of the province, Merta said they’re still going to advertise themselves as the heart of B.C.
“As far as I know, Vanderhoof will still claim the centre of the province,” Merta said.
Merta’s curiosity was satisfied and doesn’t know which project to tackle next.
“I’m not sure what’s next.”