Our Innovation In Designing The New Village
Design and Architecture
In order to ensure that the physical appearance of our new
village reflected our own cultural heritage we engaged the services
of a renowned aboriginal architect, Mr. Douglas Cardinal, to
design the major public institutions in the new village. Mr.
Cardinal designed Canada's national museum, the Museum of Civilization
and is now designing the National Museum of the American Indian
for the Smithsonian Institution in Washington.
In the area of housing it was our intention to avoid the situation
in which the vast majority of aboriginal people in Canada find
themselves: with inadequate and inappropriate housing, and saddled
with government programs which do not meet aboriginal housing
needs. The community has designed and implemented its own housing
program with the objective of addressing the housing needs of
all the community members with an emphasis on individual home
ownership. By designing a housing program locally and for the
long-term we have developed a model which will result in the
community becoming self-sufficient in the area of housing and
not dependent upon inadequate governmental programs.
The community's housing program provides affordable, comfortable
and energy-efficient housing to all community members with an
emphasis on local labour for the construction, and conformity
with the natural terrain to reduce costs of water/sewer infrastructure.
The community is on its way to natural terrain within the larger
context of sustainability.
Alternative Energy Program
District Heating System
We have also installed a very innovative alternative energy
system whereby we take the waste sawdust from sawmills operating
in the region and convert that industrial waste into energy
to provide heat and hot water for the entire village.
Our energy system is proof that energy can be generated as
if communities and the environment mattered, unlike megaprojects,
for instance. It is proof also that the philosophies and traditional
practices of aboriginal peoples are relevant to the establishment
of modern sustainable communities.