This year’s annual U-Haul Growth Index, which tracks the net gain of one-way U-Haul trucks arriving in a Canadian city, ranked North Bay, Ont., as the country’s leading growth city for the second year in a row with Sudbury following close behind in third place.
Covid-19 and skyrocketing housing prices in the Greater Toronto Area certainly had something to do with it, but both cities owe much of their appeal to the economic impact of northeastern Ontario’s mining cluster.
Vale and Glencore’s Sudbury Integrated Nickel Operations (SINO) are both in the midst of major new mine developments, gold and nickel prices are high, drills are turning and new mines are ramping up across northern Ontario, suppliers are on a roll and Sudbury in particular has emerged as one of the country’s most important hubs for mining-related research and innovation.
SINO is advancing its $1.3 billion Onaping Depth project and is in the midst of sinking an internal shaft to a depth of 2.6 km from surface. Scheduled to begin producing ore in 2024 with mine completion projected for 2025, Onaping Depth will also serve as a showcase for leading edge technologies, including mine-wide LTE communications, teleremote and autonomous equipment operation, and the deployment of battery electric vehicles.