Working in the heart of Nunavut, Nahanni Shows Cold Weather Expertise.
Meadowbank Gold Mine, in Baker Lake, Nunavut, contracted Nahanni construction to do mine foundation and structural concrete work. Over the course of 25 months Nahanni laid 31,000 m3 of concrete in some of Canada’s most remote and geographically challenging terrain. Nahanni employees were the biggest crew on site and throughout the project they maintained an exemplary safety record. The Nahanni team worked closely with the Meadowbank project planners to plan and tweak construction schedules in order to get this difficult project completed on time.
Baker Lake, NU is the only inland community on the Hudson Bay making it difficult to ship supplies to the community. All equipment was shipped by barge and brought 110 km by all-weather road to the site. Once on site conditions are difficult. Wind is relentless at the Meadowbank site and coupled with the extreme temperatures of a Nunavut winter the Nahanni team had their work cut out for them. At one point in the project Nahanni was required to do a final pour of 300 m3 of concrete on the primary crusher foundation at 65 ft high while exposed to the elements in near 24 hour darkness with temperatures hovering at a balmy -35. Nahanni’s staff weren’t the only ones who were affected by the weather. The High Arctic brings many challenges when trying to recover or create and store concrete aggregate for use during the varying seasons. Despite these challenges Nahanni completed this project on time with an unmatched safety record.
How We Helped
When Nahanni got on site the project was starting 6 months late. With a high focus on meeting schedules and deadlines Nahanni helped the Meadowbank team meet their goals by changing their construction plan numerous times to accomdate the clients needs to have early starts by other trades. With winter freeze up conditions meeting the barge on time was a high priority. Without final drawings Nahanni decided it would be best to ship 18m straight bundles of rebar and build a fabrication shop on site so rebar could be bent as needed.
With the length of Nunavut winters there was no time to spare and crews had to work through the winter months. Nahanni stepped up the job and completed the primary crusher and reclaim tunnel concrete work in the winter months.
- Nahanni had an exemplary safety record throughout the project
- Nahanni was the biggest contractor on site and had the least amount of first aid calls.
- Nahanni had 6 weeks to mobilize once awarded the contract. No major components were missed.
- Nahanni was the only hard dollar contractor to work at Meadowbank.
- Nahanni employees took bag lunch throughout the project.
- Everything except rolling equipment was shipped to the site in sea can.