24 km All-Weather Road
Agnico-Eagle Mines Limited, Meliadine Advanced Gold Exploration Project, Nunavut, Canada
The Meliadine property is located near the western shore of Hudson Bay in the Kivalliq Region of Nunavut, approximately 25 km NW of the Hamlet of Rankin Inlet and 290 km SE of Agnico-Eagle’s Meadowbank mine.
An all-weather gravel road extends from Rankin Inlet to the bank of the Char River, approximately 24 km away from the Meliadine property. A winter road access for tracked vehicles also exists from Rankin Inlet to the Meliadine exploration camp from late-December to mid-May.
In March, 2012, Kivalliq Services Ltd was awarded the contract to construct the continuation of the existing all-weather road, providing a year-round connection to Agnico-Eagles Mines' Meliadine advanced gold exploration project.
Construction of the 24 km all-weather road section commenced March, 2012 and the first part of construction was completed prior to spring freshet.
Local esker formations and granite outcrops found along the road access alignment provide the materials to construct the road base and road topping. Drilling and blasting of the granite was carried out by a local contractor under Kivalliq Services' technical guidance and management.
Road construction recommenced in October, 2012 and will require approximately 6 months to complete.
Kivalliq Services’ experienced northern manpower for the primary construction activities consists of a day and night shift crew, comprised of approximately 24 workers throughout the 24 hour work period. Due to the spring and winter work schedules the team has had to overcome extreme weather events including whiteouts lasting up to 3 days, extreme cold, winds gusting up to 90 km/hr and continuous drifting snow. Following each whiteout event, the crews will spend several days reopening the road out to the site.
Some of the fleet required to construct the road was mobilized from Edmonton, AB to Becancour, PQ for furtherance by marine transportation to Rankin Inlet, NU.
The equipment fleet is comprised of:
- 3 x 773 Rock Trucks
- 3 x 740 Articulated Rock Trucks
- 4 x 730 / D300E Articulated Rock Trucks
- 2 x D6 Dozer
- 1 x D8 Dozer
- 1 x D9 Dozer
- 1 x 988 Loader
- 1 x 330 Excavator
- 1 x 345 Excavator
- Screening Plant
and numerous pieces of rolling stock and support equipment.