THE DEMOCRATIC REPORTER
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Toronto Star - June 29, 2007, 4:30 am - By Bill Taylor, Feature Writer
Plant reduced to rubble
Sending up what a kid in the crowd called "the biggest dust bunny in the world," the one-time biggest coal-fired power station in the world has finally met its end.
It was third time lucky for Murray Demolition and Ontario Power Generation. After unco-operative winds caused two delays earlier this week, the Lakeview Generating Station in Port Credit was imploded into a small mountain range of rubble that will take the rest of the year to prepare for recycling.
It was touch and go until the last minute. A 10 km/h north or north-westerly wind was needed to blow the smoke and dust out over the lake and away from the community. The breeze teased and flirted with the flag flying at the McMillan Headland Park marina.
The crowd, some of whom had been waiting four hours, fell quiet as the one-minute siren sounded.
Over a bullhorn, OPG official Bob Osborne read the plant's obituary; a litany of facts, including that it began producing power in 1962 a couple of weeks before the Maple Leafs won the Stanley Cup. Dozens of cameras, from cell phones to TV zoom lenses, were trained on the massive building.
The charges, placed to sever structural columns, began to explode one at a time, like a giant stomping angrily through the empty halls.
The explosions went on for about 15 seconds. As the final charges blew and the western wall fell in, a huge ball of fire blossomed briefly. There was a ripple of applause.
The site was enveloped in thick, grey-brown, dust-bunny clouds; the fickle wind behaved itself and blew them across the water. The plant wasn't completely flattened. It could be an out-take from a World War II movie; the bombed ruins of a cathedral instead of an old power station locals say produced a dragon's breath of pollution.
Untroubled by all the turmoil, two swans glided serenely across the water with their cygnets. The dust bunnies kept going south.
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