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Full landfill potential hold up to hotel clean up

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Nearly three weeks after a fire destroyed the Town Centre Hotel and rumble from the fallen building still lays on the property. While the obligation to remove the rumble falls on the owners of the building, Les Robertson and Jo-Ann Smith, part of the holdup also falls on the Town and their nearly maxed out landfill.
The landfill operated by the Town has been at or near maximum capacity for close to a decade. The Town has declined to build a new landfill in favor of working towards a regional landfill, one which would be operated by a large number of communities in the north and is tentatively slated to be located south of The Pas.
While work towards the regional landfill has been progressing, it is still likely at least two years from now before the landfill would open, a timeline which could be pushed back should anything change between now and then.
Due to this delay, the Town has been working to find ways to extend the lifespan of the current landfill; however those extensions don’t accommodate for the large amount of rumble which currently sits where the Town Centre Hotel once stood.
An official volume of material that would need to go to the landfill is not yet determined as a portion would be also eligible to be recycled, however estimates on how much material is on site have ranged to over 700 tonnes. If all of that material was sent to the landfill it could cost approximately $56,000 according to the Town’s waste by-law and potentially could be tripled in not sorted before being brought to the landfill, according to Sam Mirza, Town of The Pas Municipal Superintendent.
How the material will be disposed of however has not been set, and Mirza did note if sorted the cost would be significantly less as the disposal fees are based on weight and that some of the heavier items would be free to bring in to the landfill.
“If it’s concrete in manageable pieces it’s free, if it’s brick and it’s all separated it’s free, if it’s metals and it’s all separated it’s also free,” said Mirza. “Anything that’s not any of those items its $80 a ton separated and $240 a ton (unseparated).”
The reason for the increased fee for unseparated is because the Town would have to separate it themselves, Mirza added.
The bigger issue however is how long it could take to remove the material. Due to the fact the landfill is nearly at its capacity and that the regional landfill is still a few years away from reality, finding a location to put the material will be a challenge.
“We’re concerned about our ability to handle all of that all at one time, it would be kind of too much for us to deal with at one (time),” said Mirza.
Mirza stated the Town is working with local conservation officers to find a solution.
“We’re trying work with them saying where are we going to put this? Where are we going to bring this? Are we going to try and bring this all at once and try and hammer it in somewhere which is not really realistic? We want it sent up to us in a manageable way,” said Mirza.
Mirza added that no timeframe to have the site cleaned up has been established. The fire occurred on July 12th.

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Trent Allen
EDITOR
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