The final countdown!

Carter Haydu
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Moose Jaw's Civic Centre is fenced off in preparation for the building's demolition in August 2012. 

The final show at the 52-year-old Civic Centre is expected to begin next Monday.

Demolition will take place over a period of several weeks, with a giant jackhammer mounted to an excavator drilling out the foundation. Then, the sheer weight of the suspension roof will bring the entire Civic Centre crashing in on itself.

“There’s a lot of roof,” Colliers International vice president and broker Bill Babey, speaking on behalf of Civic Centre Plaza Inc., told the Times-Herald.

While exterior demolition is to begin next week, Babey said crews have already been conducting interior demolition to remove such items as Styrofoam and drywall.

According to Babey, the jackhammer approach wasn’t the only one considered for the Civic Centre. He said, for example, a controlled explosion to collapse the facility was considered. However, consultants indicated there were more economical and safer means of achieving the same end.

He said the prospect of simply cutting the suspension roof chords was turned down as well.

Demolition is expected to take several weeks, Babey said, as the Civic Centre is incredibly solid with over 20,000 tons of concrete. That material, once demolition is complete, isn’t going to waste either. Babey said as much of the concrete as is possible will be pounded into filler for what will primarily be a parking lot portion of the upcoming Civic Centre Plaza project.

“We’re going to use what we can at the site.”

Babey said an engineered backfill is quite important for the overall project, considering it will cost $150,000 to pave over the Civic Centre site, and developers don’t want it to start caving in after a year or two.

Assuming all goes according to plan, and some of the tenant leases are signed (as is expected), Babey said construction of the new development could begin in October.

He said it is most likely construction would begin on the north end of the property, which means one of the first buildings to be erected is the main building of the project — intended to resemble the current Civic Centre.

“Everyone likes the look of that.”

According to Babey, developers are confident in the viability of Civic Centre Plaza to bring new commercial options to the Friendly City. He said the project is to offer 76,000 square-feet of space, and currently the total number of interested tenants could fill 180,000 square-feet of space.

“So there has been ample interest.


Carter Haydu can be reached at 691-1265.

Organizations: Civic Centre Plaza, Colliers International, Times-Herald

Geographic location: Friendly

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