Robertson headframe to be demolished Saturday night

Con Mine's Robertson Headframe (aerial view)
Con Mine's Robertson Headframe (aerial view)
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The Robertson headframe will no longer be a part of Yellowknife’s skyline after the weekend.

The contractor tasked with demolishing the iconic 76-meter structure will use explosives to bring it down between 4:30 and 5:30 p.m. on Saturday.

RELATED: Appeal to delay demolition of Robertson headframe dismissed

Winnipeg-based Rakowski Cartage and Wrecking arrived in town last week to commence the demolition process.

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The fate of the territory’s tallest man-made structure was effectively sealed when the government broke off talks with Miramar Mining Corporation to save it earlier this summer.

Con Mine

The City of Yellowknife had previously called off talks with Miramar – the company tasked with remediating the contaminated Con gold mine – in February 2015.

Last week, buildings that were attached to the headframe were removed in preparation of the demolition process.

The next step involves using explosives to bring the structure to the ground.

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“[We] must move forward with decommissioning the structure according to the agreed-upon plan,” said Scott Stringer, Miramar’s general manager at the Con Mine site.

“The Robertson headframe is more than 40 years old and must be removed or properly maintained to ensure it does not pose a future risk to people or the environment.

“As the next phase of decommissioning the structure requires the use of explosives, we urge all those wishing to observe the event … to remain outside of the mine lease boundaries.”

Stringer says guards will ensure anyone watching the demolition on Saturday is a safe distance away.

Once the headframe is down, residents are still asked to obey signage in the area as it will remain an active remediation site.

Stringer says scraps and salvageable materials will be cleaned up over the next few weeks. Depending on weather, he expects all work to be completed by the end of December.

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