Vale applies to build homes at its Canadian mining sites

Giant miner Vale (NYSE:VALE) is requesting the Canadian city of Sudbury to allow the housing of hundreds of temporary construction workers at its mine, mill and smelter sites in the community.

The company’s spokesperson, Angie Robson, told  CBC radio show “Morning North” that Vale is having a lot of work done in the coming months and may need as many as 2,000 construction workers at a time. Robson said the zoning change the company is asking for is simply to make sure those workers have somewhere to stay.  The company believes the city might not have the capacity to host them, which may result in delays.

"We're simply looking for flexibility that if we require it in the future, that we'd be able to house these temporary workers on our site,” she told CBC.

Statistics from the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation released Oct. 9 backed what Robson said. Overall they show the market has slowed in Greater Sudbury compared to 2011. While single residential housing starts were up slightly in September, the number of multi-residential projects – row houses, apartment buildings, and condominiums – is down significantly.

Sudbury city council will consider allowing Vale's request early next year. The company has been mining for nickel in the city for over 100 years.