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Stelwire Burlington Works

A subsidiary of Stelco Inc, Stelwire was the largest producer of steel wire products in Canada. It's Burlington Works plant, located in the industrial zones of Burlington, was where roughly 1/3rd of the production, and dealt with rod processing.

Location attributes for Stelwire Burlington Works
Location   Burlington, Ontario
Built :: Closed   1956 :: 2006
Status   Demolished
Difficulty   ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
Hazards Risk   ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Security Risk   ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
AUE Rating   ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

Now the Burlington Works are completely demolished, a victim of the collapse of Stelco and the court-ordered sell off that followed. Mittal, who became the new owners of Stelwire, felt that the Burlington Works were un-needed, and as such the demolition began.

Most of the heavy equipment was still in place at the time of my visit, such as the cleaning and annealing machines, along with the huge transformers that powered them. The offices were mostly barren, with vandals having got to them first.

There was very little, if any, security on the grounds. I saw no one during my visit there, and no one else who had visited had reported any trouble or run-ins with security. Made it a real easy location to visit.

There were hazards galore, though. The site used both acid and lime as parts of the industrial process. There was lime all over the catwalks and floor around where the tanks are, and the acid lines still had liquid in them. I never checked to see whether it was, in fact, acid.

There were also hazards from the demolition... gaps in the floor where things used to be bolted down, sections of roof that fell down when the wind blows, among others. You needed to keep your wits about you.

Not that it matters anymore. Within a week or two of my visit, Stelwire was nothing more than a barren field of rubble. But for the brief period where I visited, it was a half-demolished industrial paradise.

Industrial Espionage - October 2008
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