On April 28th, 2014, the first person checked into KSPC’s construction camp 3 km north-east of the Legacy mine site. Between that day and the official opening on May 29th, the number of people in the camp climbed to approximately 200.
There are now about 650 residents at the camp, all of whom are employed by KSPC’s construction and services contractors. Clean Harbors is the supplier of the camp modules and is responsible for the installation. ATCO has partnered with George Gordon First Nation to operate the camp. That includes services such as catering, housekeeping, and maintenance.
The camp is still under construction. The first phase finished in July with 720 rooms. The second phase will be completed in December 2014 and will bring the camp’s final capacity to 1470.
Despite the necessity of the camp, KSPC faced some barriers in the initial stages. “When we bought Potash One, they had never considered a camp, so we had to go through a permitting process,” said Dr. Markus Gawlowski, Area Manager, of Camp for KSPC. After doing an assessment, KSPC needed to meet with the council and ratepayers of the RM of Dufferin to explain why there was now a desire to build a camp, the benefits of doing so, and how KSPC would manage details like security, noise, garbage, and waste disposal. “The meetings between KSPC and the RM were very positive. KSPC involved the RM during the permitting phase including several town hall meetings and addressed all of their concerns,” said Gawlowski. After these meetings, the RM of Dufferin approved KSPC’s Development permit and shortly after, the Ministry of the Environment gave approval for the camp’s construction.
Rooms at the camp are all singles equipped with a private bathroom, cable TV, and internet. There is also a gym, a small theatre, billiards, foosball tables, and a commissary. With meals and daily cleaning services provided and a lounge opening this fall, the camp is certainly a desirable place to stay.
In addition, all utilities at the camp are built-in for the life of the construction camp; these include a potable waterline, power supply, and gas supply. Gawlowski said, “If you have to truck everything, there is more traffic and higher risk. Having built-in lines is more convenient for the surrounding area.”
KSPC wanted to ensure that workers at Legacy would be well taken care of. “We are in competition with other projects around here, in Saskatchewan, especially in Alberta. Our intention was to offer potential employees a nice place to live and attract the best workers for our Legacy project,” said Gawlowski.