The Future of Coniston

On January 28, 1972, INCO announced that it would be shutting down the smelter in Coniston due to the environmental restrictions implemented by the Ontario Government, and because the old smelter was not as efficient as the one in Copper Cliff. Three months later, on April 16th, the smelter employees worked their last shift. Only a handful of employees were laid off (most were of retirement age and opted to take their pension) while the remaining workers were transferred to the Copper Cliff plant.

With the closure of the smelter, the structure quickly began to deteriorate. The plant was kept as a "stand by" smelter for a few years but in 1976, the decision was made to demolish the smelter. The remaining buildings (the changehouse and offices, the power house, the two smoke stacks built in 1954 and 1959, the warehouse, the shops, and the thaw-shed) were left standing. INCO proceeded to transform the area into an industrial park. Various enterprises were enticed to move their operations to the area where they utilized the buildings left over from Coniston's smeltering days.

In 1972, Coniston became part of the Town of Nickel Centre and INCO donated the Coniston Community Hall to the town. Throughout the coming months, INCO would sell all of its company-owned homes to the employees, except for the one at 47 First Avenue.

On January 1, 2001, Coniston and the rest of Nickel Centre joined with various other communities throughout the Regional Municipality of Sudbury to become the City of Greater Sudbury.

Today, Coniston continues to embody a sense of warmth and family as experienced through the close relationships of its citizens.


Material compiled from The Coniston Story.

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