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Sign of the times: Ritchie Bros. to sell 1,200-person work camp

The economic downturn burning northern Alberta and B.C., has been a boon for one company. Burnaby-based Ritchie Bros.

The economic downturn burning northern Alberta and B.C., has been a boon for one company. 

Burnaby-based Ritchie Bros. auctioneers has set company records for sales since the downturn took hold, as oilfield companies offload their now unneeded equipment. 

But the company's latest item for sale is its largest ever: a lightly used 1,200-person work camp.

The camp, calle dthe Blue Sky Lodge, was built by ATCO in 2013 for the Shell-led Carmon Creek project which was shelved in October 2015 as uncertainty loomed over the lack of infrastructure to move Canadian crude to global markets.

The Blue Sky Lodge is didvided into several complexes with three wings of living areas and 1,232 fully-furnished executive-style rooms. It's located about 50 kilometres north east of Peace River, Alberta.

1,200-person camp 2
One of the fully furnished executive rooms. - Ritchie Bros. Equipment One

"In (our) 55+ years of business we've sold a lot of seriously big heavy equipment items," a July 27 blog post on the company's website states. "But nothing really comes close in sheer physical size to this unique asset."

It's about the size of a small town and includes a medical clinic, bar/lounge, gym, living areas, waste water treatment plant, backup generators, three external luggage storage containers, a security trailer and an electrified fence to go around the perimeter of the camp.

There is also a fully-equipped professional-grade kitchen and dining facility that can feed 1,200-plus residents in 1.5 hours. 

Ritchie Bros. is offering site inspections and inquiries about removal of the camp from its current location by request.

The camp was still available for sale as of press time, according to a company representative. To view the camp, visit