Multi-use complex in AOK nearing completion

AUNDECK OMNI KANING—The finishing touches are being applied to the new multi-use complex and business centre in Aundeck Omni Kaning with an anticipated full completion date sometime near the end of October.

“It should be mostly finished by the end of September, beginning of October,” said Chief Patsy Corbiere. “There were a lot of delays due to the past winter and a very wet summer, but it will be done soon. We are just waiting for the backordered bleachers.”

For the past several months the work has been ongoing inside and out of sight, noted Chief Corbiere.

The business centre portion of the development has seen a strong interest from potential tenants. “We have had a lot of leads in the form of letters of interest,” said the chief. “We will be selecting the successful applicants shortly.”

One of the key attractions of the site for tenants are the lower rental costs associated with the location, noted Chief Corbiere. “The rents are cheaper out here,” she said. “That makes it very attractive for First Nations operations in particular.”

The band has a marketing plan in place for the site that will see considerable benefit for surrounding communities. “We are looking at volleyball and basketball tournaments,” said Chief Corbiere. “The new Manitoulin Hotel and Conference Centre in Little Current works well with that. Before there were not enough rooms available to successfully host bigger tournaments.”

The plan includes private enterprise in the form of a fitness centre and café and public services such as youth activities. “We are trying to put all of the services in one area,” she said. “But there is a need to look at operating businesses as individuals. With all the reductions in funding happening these days we need to make things more self-sufficient. We mirrored the centre on the one in Garden River.”