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Plans for the new community of Faro, Yukon, 1968

An Explorer's Guide to Faro, Yukon

    On page 1 of The Whitehorse Star of Monday, July 8, 1968, a small article stated:

"It's Faro. The Yukon's newest town is to be called Faro. Territorial Council agreed Friday that the suggestion made by Anvil engineer Robert Thurmond should be accepted, since the Corporation is spending enough money to justify naming the new townsite. "What does it mean"? asked Councillor John Livesey. He was told it meant a game of chance, popular during the Klondike Gold Rush, and expressed the hope that Anvil would hold a winning hand."
On page 17, the article below expanded on plans for the townsite.

The Whitehorse Star, Monday, July 8, 1968.

Plans for the new community of Faro, Yukon, 1968

    Anvil Mining Corporation is spending about $60 million to bring its new base metal property in the Yukon into production next year; and about six million of those dollars will go toward construction of houses and recreational facilities at the new town of Faro.

    Robert Thurmond, speaking for Anvil during discussions with the Yukon Territorial Council last week said "Our whole $60 million investinent really rests on this townsite and the facilities and accommodation and amenities available to the people that are going to live there."

    Councillor McKinnon had asked why it was written into the Territorial Government agreement with Anvil that the company would have a veto power over any developer who might be interested in operating the commercial section of the new townsite.

    Mr. Thurmond said "We have tried to avoid a company town, and we are going to continue to try to do this, but in this initial phase, it's a little different. If it isn't set up properly and we don't have the people we need to operate this plant on a steady basis, we are not going to have a good project. We're not going to have a very economic project.

    So we've got to have a stake in it this fashion. It's awfully important to have some opportunity to approve what is done...I feel that we want to work as a partner with you (the Territorial government) in selecting this initial person, trying to encourage him to come in here and develop. We may have some plums to attract him in.

    "In order to attract someone (to develop the commercial centre of Faro) we are going to have to offer some things such as rental of office space in whatever buildings he builds. We are going to have to, perhaps, give him catering contracts with Anvil. Maybe a number of things like this would have to be thrown into the pot in order to get this individual in. I think that's essentially what we mean when we say we want to have the opportunity to approve.

    "We want to work as a partner in getting this initial developer in. Developments that occur after that...after we have a municipality...after we've got the first person in there and the population expands enough so that there is room for competition, then we could care less and we won't be involved."

    Council agreed that both the Territorial government and Anvil should approve the developer of the commercial area.

    Mr, Thurmond summed it up: "I think our intent here is that the initial development plan is something that we would like to approve. If a developer comes in and he's going to sub-lease shops to someone else as a part of his development plan, this is of no concern to us. We are only looking at the approval of the initial development plan.

    "Development plans would be invited. It's a matter of competition. The one that is the most acceptable to the Commissioner in the first instance is recommended and Anvil has a chance to concur or approve that recommendation."

    "From then on, it's a municiality and it grows in a normal fashion and business grows in a normal fashion."

    Councillors agreed that "The Territorial Govemment proceed with the construction of a public townsite under terms and conditions discussed with the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and the Anvil Mining Corporation."