Wikwemikong closer to realizing goal of light industrial park thanks to funding

Wikwemikong has received $30,150 to draft detailed engineered drawings for 15 lots of the Wikwemikong Light Industrial Park.

BUZWAH—Wikwemikong is inching ever closer to its goal of hosting a light industrial park in the community, thanks to a grant from the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC).

It was announced last week that Wikwemikong has received $30,150 to draft detailed engineered drawings for 15 lots of the Wikwemikong Light Industrial Park. First Nations Engineering has been contracted to provide the detailed engineering drawings.

Chief Duke Peltier explained that the creation of this site is an effort through the Wikwemikong Development Corporation to create more jobs in the community. The location of the park is a 500-acre site off of Wikwemikong Way in Buzwah that has been designated by council for the project. The conceptual design will see 60 lots.

The project was supported last year by FedNor with funds provided for conceptual drawings of the park.

“We’ve had expressions of interest from manufacturers looking to relocate from southern Ontario to Northern Ontario,” Chief Peltier said. “We’re now in a waiting game to begin the access road and ensure that all of the infrastructure needs are met.”

Tenders for the road access will likely to go out next spring, the chief added.

So far, the WDC is looking to place storage units in the park, as this is a need identified by the community, and local construction companies have also indicated an interest.

“There’s definitely interest from existing businesses and enterprises which will hopefully generate additional revenue, not just for Manitoulin, but for Northern Ontario,” Chief Peltier added. “The development itself will incubate added employment for Manitoulin.”