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Mining Structure Near Bonanaza Express Collapses

An old mine building on the Park City slopes has collapsed under the weight of snow. And while it wasn’t one of the top historic priorities to save, one local preservationist says it’s a wake-up call for them to get moving to rescue the most important buildings.

Sally Elliott, from the group Friends of Ski Mountain Mining History, said she received word Monday morning that a building near the Silver king Head Frame had collapsed over the night Sunday. She said the structure, near the base of the Bonanza Express, had some 4-5 feet of snow on the roof.

Elliott added that the double doors of the structure are sagging. She said she’s not certain what the old building was used for.

The entire complex around the Silver King Head Frame is roped off. Elliott reported that the snow is so deep that it’s covering lower windows and door openings.

In a statement, Margo Van Ness, Senior Manager of Communications for Park City Mountain Resort, said they have roped off the area all season since the safety of guests and employees is their top priority.

She noted that stabilization efforts have focused on seven priorities, including sites at the Jupiter Mine, King Con, and California-Comstock Mine, but this building wasn’t on that list.

Elliott said this is a reminder that they have to get even busier with their fundraising and stabilization efforts. She said she visited the Thaynes Mine Conveyor Gallery on Monday, which is the most iconic and threatened structure on their list and found there is additional sagging.

As for the Silver King Head Frame, Elliott said they are looking for a major donor, who would receive naming rights for the funding. She said that project will cost at least a couple thousand dollars.

Known for getting all the facts right, as well as his distinctive sign-off, Rick covered Summit County meetings and issues for 35 years on KPCW. He now heads the Friday Film Review team.
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