Open house a big success for Teck

Trent Ernst, Editor
 

(l-r) Chris Ryan, Senior Engineering Supervisor. Coolest. Cake. Ever. Mayor Darwin Wren discusses the project with Senior Environmental Officer  Lcarn Hannan.
 
The room was rarely less than packed at the Teck Open house held Wednesday, October 10 at the Trend Mountain Hotel, with 210 people showing up between 3 pm and 9 pm.
 
Attendees were given a “Quintette Project Open House Passport.” The passport had six featured stations listed, corresponding to the stations around the room. Attendees were encouraged to go to each of the stations and ask questions. At each station they, having asked the questions, were given a coloured sticker. Having collected all the sticker’s attendees were then entered into a draw. 
 
Teck representative Ray Proulx says the passports were designed to get people interacting and finding out more about the project.
 
One of the first stops was General Project Information, where Senior Engineering Supervisor Chris Ryan discussed the overall mine plan, schedule and other details of the mine. He says that, while the current mine plan includes the Windy and Window Pits which should last the company at least a decade (actual estimates are 11 years), the company has other properties in the area which they could develop in the future. 
 
As well, the company hasn’t ruled out the possibility of going underground. “This area here,” says Ryan, pointing at a large swath of Babcock Mountain between the current pit and a proposed pit to the west, “Has so much overburden that going underground is probably the best option.” However, says Ryan, the company currently doesn’t have any firm plans to go underground. “We’re going to focus on our strengths,” says Ryan, pointing out that, while the company has an underground mine in Eastern Canada, their strength is surface mining.

Ryan says they’re still not sure how the mine will affect the nearby Boulder Garden hiking area. He points to a map, showing the extent of the pits as well as the blasting setbacks. While the pits do not extend into the Boulder Garden area, the blasting setbacks do. Ryan says he isn’t sure whether any closures at the popular hiking area would be for hours or for years. “That’s something for the Ministry of Environment to decide,” he says. 
 
Of special note was the food, especially the Teck cake, complete with haul trucks and edible “gravel”.