Yellowknife city council abandons plans to take over Con Mine Robertson headframe
One landmark from Yellowknife’s gold mining past is close to disappearing for good, while the future of another is in limbo. Plans are underway to begin dismantling the iconic C-Shaft headframe at Giant Mine this summer, representatives from Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada said at a public meeting Thursday night.
It’s part of an early “site stabilization” phase of the remediation project triggered in 2013 by concerns about site safety. “People will definitely notice a difference,” said Jane Amphlett, an engineering manager with the project.
“We haven’t finalized the plan, but it’s likely that significant parts of the shaft will come down in the next year, and likely perhaps all of it will come down once [our engineers] finalize the actual plan for it.” Amphlett said the timber tower, which is at the centre of the clean-up site, poses a potential safety risk to remediation workers.
The smaller A-Shaft headframe, near the Yellowknife boat launch area and close to the intended site of a proposed N.W.T. Mining Museum, will also be taken down, though when has not be determined yet, Amphlett added.
Earlier this week, city councillors voted to end discussions about taking over ownership of Con Mine’s hard-to-miss Robertson headframe from Newmont Mining Corporation
The decision comes after city administration said it’s simply not possible for the city to absolve Newmont of any potential liability for the red-topped headframe.
“It’s really a case of not being able to do what the majority of council wanted to do. It’s not a case of us not being in support of [preserving the headframe],” says Councillor Cory Vanthuyne.
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