Skip to content

Back on track at Rainy River gold pit

New Gold pins first production for September

New management seems to have put the construction of New Gold’s Rainy River project back on schedule.

The Toronto mine developer said it remains on target for its first gold production in September with commercial production starting in November.

The company released an update on June 27 on the schedule and capital costs for the massive open-pit mine.

At this point, everything remains on track as outlined back in January when cost over-runs and delays in digging out the pit northwestern Ontario prompted sweeping project management changes.

The estimated development capital cost from the beginning of 2017 to November remains $515 million.

Commissioning of primary crusher and conveyor system are complete, with the first crush completed on May 11, 2017. Installation of mechanical, piping, electrical and instrumentation in processing facilities are 95 per cent complete.

The ball and grinding mill is mechanically finished and has been handed over to operations staff for commissioning in August.

Power has been extended to all key areas on site.

A starter tailings cell is under construction which would provide capacity for six months of production tailings when the mill is at full capacity.

"We are pleased with the solid progress we have made at Rainy River over the last five months," said company president-CEO Hannes Portmann in a statement.

"Through the second quarter, our team has both successfully commenced the staged commissioning of our process facility and delivered on our mining plan. As the pit has opened up, our operations team has recently delivered further increases in the mining rate, including several days over 130,000 tonnes per day."

The mine site is 65 kilometres northwest of Fort Frances in Richardson Township. New Gold has four operating mines in Australia, Mexico, the U.S., and the New Afton Mine in Kamloops, B.C., and another mine under construction in B.C.’s interior.