The town of Kitsault in British Columbia, Canada was established in 1979 as the home community to a molybdenum mine. The business was operated by Phelps Dodge. Around 1200 residents lived in a small town, complete with a shopping mall, restaurant, swimming pool, hospital, school, and a bowling alley in it.
However, prices for molybdenum crashed and the whole community was asked to leave the place. It was just 18 months after they moved and it seemed like an overnight stay for many.
"It was a tough go, because the prices of molybdenum started to fall even during construction," John Sanders, the mine manager, told CBC News.
"The U.S. mines were under tremendous stress, and the cash flow of the company was at risk, but I hoped people had lost sight of the fact there was this little mine in B.C. chugging this stuff out," he added.
Despite the short-live presence of it, Sanders shared he didn’t regret any of the experiment.
"It makes great economic sense to minimize the infrastructure costs. You're much better off flying people in and out," he said.
"But you'd never have Kitsault. You'd never have those memories. None of us would ever have that experience," he added.
In 2014, a photographer named Chad Graham roamed around the abandoned town. He took photographs of every stuff he stumbled upon, showing how furniture, book shelves—everything—was left behind as is.
Everything was surprisingly in order. The power was left on, and it run for 30 years. Due to lack of funds, the former residents were only able to bring their personal belongings, leaving everything else behind.
Every stuff has late 1970s design. Plus, the town’s backdrop, a calm river, makes the place really stunning. There were a total of 94 homes and 200 apartments, and all of these are left vacant.
In the interview, Brad Halkier, former doctor at Kitsault, shared that the town was peaceful, noting that any conflict did not even occur.
Sanders agreed and said, "You'd think okay, small town, there's going to be problems with drinking or violence—we didn't even have police there, for goodness sake! There were incidents, but they were very, very rare.”
"People, they did their thing, and it seemed, without having a great long list of municipal rules and regulations, people just behaved," he added.
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