Elliot Lake mall collapse: A small town’s vital centre caves in

Fred Lum/The Globe and Mail

Saturday, June 30, 2012 – Globe and Mail
ADRIAN MORROW, ANNA MEHLER PAPERNY, JANE SWITZER and STEPHEN SPENCER DAVIS

TORONTO and ELLIOT LAKE, ONT. — When the mines powering Elliot Lake wound down 20 years ago, the town’s mall was poised to go with them: Its tenants were leaving, its owners eager to sell and its maintenance issues well known.

But volunteers intent on keeping Elliot Lake going knew they needed a commercial centre for what they hoped to turn into a vital retirement community. They bought the mall with this in mind, and the Algo Centre, built for a far larger and more prosperous city, became the small town’s anomalous locus point.

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