Significant quantities of blue siding appear to have fallen from Yellowknife’s 10-storey Bellanca building overnight.
On Wednesday morning, heaps of the crumpled siding lay in an adjacent parking lot.
One exterior wall of the building is missing its siding along the top five storeys.
Building managers could not immediately be reached for comment. The City of Yellowknife, in a statement, said it “is aware of what happened but as it happened on private property, there is no response needed from the City right now.”
Even so, the City’s municipal enforcement team blocked off a section of road around the building on Wednesday as small pieces of siding continued to fall.
It’s not clear if anyone was in the vicinity when the bulk of the siding fell. No injuries were reported as of 9am on Wednesday.
The highly visible, yellow underbelly of the exterior wall prompted considerable comment from Yellowknife residents heading to work on Wednesday – some speculating overnight winds had torn down the siding.
While conditions were breezy, overnight winds were not especially strong according to Environment Canada data. A weather station at Yellowknife Airport reported sustained winds reaching 36 km/h with occasional gusts to 43 km/h.
By comparison, the early hours of Saturday, August 18 had sustained winds of more than 40 km/h and gusts of up to 60 km/h. The early mornings of August 13 and 15 also recorded stronger gusts.
The Bellanca building’s siding survived gusts of around 70 km/h in each of the past seven years, data suggested.
The building, situated downtown and offering 5,575 square metres of office space, has been vacant for more than five years since its government tenants moved out.
It was opened in 1973 and extensively renovated in 1996.