The completion of an 8,4000-square-foot Centre of Excellence at Wahnapitae First Nation is a first step toward achieving a self-sustaining community, according to Chief Myles Tyson.
The $4-million single-storey building will not only serve as the hub for the community, it will also help create four new jobs. It will house a meeting hall, medical clinic, the community's Sustainable Development Department and a business incubator service. The province has announced it will invest $1 million for the project through the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation.
“This is a very exciting time for the people of Wahnapitae First Nation,” Tyson said. “The Centre of Excellence will not only provide the staff of the band with a clean, warm place to work, but also give our residents a community centre we can all use and be proud of.”
The centre will accommodate current and future needs of the First Nation and will be the gateway to the community, he said.
“This new community centre will be a place where Wahnapitae First Nation residents can gather, conduct business and receive medical services under one roof,” Sudbury MPP Rick Bartolucci, Minister of Northern Development and Mines, said. “Our investments in First Nations projects across the north are boosting economies and improving opportunities for Aboriginal families.”
The new building is inspired by Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design and will boast numerous environmental efficiency features such as passive solar heating, geothermal technology, energy conservation, low-impact storm water management, use of recycled and 'green' building products and naturalized low maintenance landscaping.
Construction on the centre began last August with a completion date planned for this coming August. The opening is slated for Sept. 9, which is the anniversary of the signing of the Robinson Treaty of 1850. The First Nation, located east of Capreol, has 101 permanent residents and 450 members.
Posted by Arron Pickard