Work on a new $4 million multi-purpose building started this month at Bell’s Point will have a large focus on education.
“It’s certainly several thousand square-feet for sure,” Lac La Ronge Indian Band director of public works and housing Tayven Roberts said. “This project was part of our overall strategic plan for the band. This was goal number one, so I’m happy to say we addressed it.”
With an expected completion date set for August 2019, Roberts said the building will include a daycare centre, Head Start programs, pre-Kindergarten, three classrooms for adults, and eight offices for health and education staff. He noted the band currently lacks a pre-Kindergarten class, which should help free up space in Head Start when implemented. Two dental chairs will also be added to the new facility.
Roberts also said a project team was formed in 2016 to start the process of a feasibility study for the building. The planning and designed phase occurred all of last year, while a tender was put out to construction companies earlier this year. Ground work began two weeks ago, he added, at a location across the street from Bell’s Point Elementary School.
“We’re band financing this with our own-source revenue,” Roberts said. “We’re committed to paying for all of it if we have to, but if the government can help us out, we’ll appreciate it.”
As part of the band’s effort to improve educational facilities, Roberts noted several million dollars are coming for renovations at Sally Ross School in Hall Lake. There’s also potential for an expansion on Bell’s Point Elementary School, which he said is overpopulated by 141 students and requires eight more classrooms.
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