A mining town by any other name is still a mining town

The village where I live in came into being because in 1966 a mine was opened here and started producing twenty-four million pounds of copper, one hundred thirty-six thousands ounces of silver and fifteen thousand ounces of gold annually. The village was built to accommodate the employees of the mine.

However the mine closed in 1992, and the village became a popular retirement and outdoor recreation destination, with moorage slips, picnic areas, parks, a golf course, plentiful hunting and fishing.

That is all about to change. A large mining company is in the last stages of developing plans to mine a deposit that has been found about 29km from here. The mine will be an open pit with an ore production rate of 30,000 tonnes per day or 11 million tonnes of ore per year, producing approximately 155,000 tonnes of concentrate per year containing copper, gold and molybdenum.

The village has very mixed feelings on the subject. The Mayor is overjoyed as the increased revenues will bring money into the coffers. It will probably mean the hotel, which has gone bankrupt twice since we moved here, will be sold again and the restaurant will open also. We might even get more than one. In the heyday of the previous mine there were three restaurants, if that is what you could call them. Dot’s Diner, Coyote Jack’s Place, and the Mammoth Lodge, named after the mammoth bones found at the pit.

We could see anything from a 1000 to 1500 new faces although where they are all going to live I don’t know, as houses that were empty when the last mine closed have all been bought, but I suppose the mine will deal with that, they built this place after all.

We are not thrilled, as we moved here because it was quiet and out of the way. There are always pluses and minuses in these things. The school will stay open, the medical centre will probably be upgraded, although it is pretty good now, we will have a full time Fire Brigade as it is all volunteers right now. We probably will get a bank or at least an ATM machine and a grocery store. The road into town will be repaved but we will lose the intimacy of a tiny village, the deserted roads, knowing most people by sight if not by name, and it will be noisier.

We are glad we live on the very outskirts of the village. I hope we don’t get too negative about it but progress must go on. I understand they are being very careful of the environment and every care will be taken to keep our big lake and surrounding area the same as it is now.

Any way I look at it a mining town is still a mining town, which to me means a lot of noisy, rough types drinking away their paychecks on their days off. I probably have watched to many movies about the Klondike days. I wonder if we will get a ‘House of Soiled Doves’ as well!

4 Responses

  1. Around here, there is very little new forms of employment that ever comes here to call this home as a result, when the kids finish school, if they don’t go on to college, there’s not very much in the way of gainful work here so many of them leave then. College very often draws the young people away too once completed. One of the reasons we can’t always draw new industry is that frequently it is met with the opposition by virtue of the very reasons you named. No, I’m not crazy about many of those drawback either that new industry might bring, but sometimes, it can be that or death too. Tough choices ya know for everyone.

  2. You’ve been tagged. Feel free to play along if you like. 🙂 http://theinsanewriter.blogspot.com/2007/10/tagged-with-my-pants-down.html

  3. Just think how much your property value will go up.
    You may meet your new best friend in someone who moves to town.
    You may be inspired to start some new, much needed business.

    Just trying to be positive. Actually I don’t think I would like it either. I hope it turns out great for the whole town/village.

  4. Yes it is best to look at the positive and not dwell on the might happen negatives. Thanks guys

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