Posts Tagged ‘first nations’

100+ Modular Home Project Nears Completion

May 8th, 2017 Comments off

As in the U.S., Canadian housing is costly in many areas, and factory building can be a positive option. Here, the First Nation receives final modular homes. Credit Norther Ontario Business.

In a story that the Daily Business News originally covered here, the Kashechewan First Nation community has received the final batch of modular duplexes for its residents.

According to Northern Ontario Business, March was the “milestone month” for residents, as

104 units were put onto their foundations, completing a project that began last July. Back in May 2014, 36 homes were damaged in Kashechewan due to flooding, which forced the evacuation of 454 residents to temporary accommodations in Kapuskasing.

We did all the foundations, all the training, we stitched the units together and the final buttoning up of the units to get them ready for the handover to the clients,” said Terry Sutherland, president of Tundra Construction, a First Nation-owned company headquartered in Moose Factory.

The modular duplexes were constructed by Maple Leaf Homes in New Brunswick, and locals did the primary labor on site.

Our workforce was 99 per cent local band members,” said Sutherland.

With an estimated 50 residents working alongside experienced tradespeople in roles as carpenters, laborers, electricians, plumbers, lifting and rigging.”

Sutherland also pointed out that the entire process around modular homes involved a learning curve.


First Nation receives final modular homes. Credit Norther Ontario Business.

This whole system of handling modular homes was new to pretty much everyone up there,” said Sutherland. “The first one was a learning process for a lot of them, but after that it was just general carpentry with the beams. It was a different process as compared to a stick-built house.”

In March, Kashechewan signed a framework agreement with Ottawa and Queen’s Park to come up with a long-term community plan for better housing and health programs and infrastructure development.

Also included in those plans is a possible relocation of the community to a less flood-prone area.

When they left Kashechewan two and a half years ago now, they basically left with a small duffle bag with some clothes. They’ve basically rebuilt their memories and all their personal property and stuff while they were here in Kapuskasing,“ said Kapuskasing fire chief Gerry Desmeules in December.

And, while the new modular homes could be moved in the event of severe flooding in the future, some residents are thinking that they may have to leave again.


Text graphic credit, MHProNews.

Some people are saying as they get on the plane, well, we’re going to see you again in the spring, because obviously the problems they have with flooding up the coast,” said Desmeules, “so, it’s always a roll of the dice for them.“


Crane set of First Nation residents receiving final modular homes in project. Credit Norther Ontario Business.

The full story documenting the First Nation residents return is linked here. ##

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

RC Williams, Daily Business News MHProNewsSubmitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Modular Building Helps Native American First Nations Solve Housing Challenges

January 11th, 2017 Comments off

Credit: Britco.

For many among the member of the “First Nations” in Canada, quality affordable housing is a persistent challenge. The Yale First Nation in British Columbia knows this all too well, having to work to provide housing that meets the challenge of standing up to cold weather without being too expensive.

According to The Tyee, the Yale Nation receives a maximum of $169,000 from the federal government to build a house. That’s enough for a single-family, wood-frame house or, as Yale First Nation Chief Ken Hansen calls them, “B.C. box houses.

These homes can take six to 12 months to complete, and with frequent rains delays even though the homes meet basic code structure, their quality often leads to challenges including mold.

These challenges led the Yale Nation to Britco, a Langley, British Columbia-based modular building company.

Yale contracted with the company to build 10 two-bedroom modular units in a pair of buildings that meet high-efficiency “Passive House” design requirements.

For us, the appeal was not only are we being environmentally conscious, which is very important to our chief and council,” said Crystal Sedore, housing manager for the Yale First Nation.

But also to build housing that is beyond minimal acceptable standards. We want something better, and our membership deserves better.

Passive House homes are designed to be so energy-efficient that they are able to stay warm at 62 degrees with residents’ body heat, energy from the sun, and by turning on the lights.

Passive Housing relies on strict construction standards and material specifications to ensure as little heat seepage as possible, and housing can be completed in 30 days.

Britco says that their previous Passive House project, located in Bella Bella, B.C., takes as much energy to heat on the coldest day of the year as turning on six 100-watt incandescent light bulbs.

For the Yale Nation, that means cost savings.


Modular units in progress. Credit: The Tyee.

We’re looking at hydro bills estimated to be $10 to $20 a month for heating and electricity” in these new units,” Sedore said.

Yale says it will track the units energy use and share the data, providing a valuable test case for modular Passive House designs in other communities, regardless of whether or not they’re Indigenous.

I’m hoping to lead by example,” said Chief Hansen. ##

(Editor’s Note: The Daily Business News has covered a number of First Nation stories, including the Kashechewan First Nation returning to their land, with new modular housing to welcome them. That story is linked here.)

(Image credits are as shown above.)


RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Mod Manufacturer Acquires Another

June 5th, 2012 Comments off

TheGlobeandMail tells from Canada Quebec-based modular manufacturer Pro-Fab has acquired Guildcrest Building Corporation, a Morewood, Ontario modular home producer. Pro-Fab is actually part of Chicago-based Wynnchurch Capital, a private equity fund management company that had previously opened a Toronto office in 2009. Guildcrest has provided homes for first nations communities and age-restricted communities for 20 years in Ontario.

(Photo credit: Pro-Fab/MarketWire)

Modular City to Bloom in Canada

March 8th, 2012 Comments off

Just north of eastern Montana and north of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada, a modular town of 2,500 residents will emerge to provide workforce housing to build BHP Billiton’s Jansen potash mine, near the Gordon First Nation. has learned from GlobalRegina that Craig Alloway of Calgary-based Atco, says it will be the largest project ever for the company. Each of the 2,500 bedrooms will have a private bathroom, and the complex will include a dining hall to seat 1,200, as well as recreational and entertainment facilities. Atco is collaborating with the Day Star, Kowacatoose, and Gordon First Nations to create the temporary housing that will employ many of their people. Chris Ryder with BHP says, “Everything that we’re doing is really geared toward building the capacity to be able to hire as many First Nations and frankly other local employees as possible.”

(Image credit: GlobalNews)

ICI and RedLeaf Homes Team Up

February 28th, 2012 Comments off

From north of the border Sys-Con says Innovative Composites International, Inc. (ICI) has inked a deal to provide RedLeaf Homes, Ltd. with modular housing to distribute to mining camps, First Nations, and in other rural areas. RedLeaf will maintain exclusivity providing they generate $5 million worth of revenue annually. ICI’s EcoScape modular system is constructed of 100 percent recyclable materials, formed into panels composed of a thermoplastic fibre reinforced composite. This ‘skin’ is impervious to water and nearly impenetrable, making it ideal for the harsh climate, according to Terry Ball, ICI’s CEO and president. “ Superior insulation, speed of assembly, rot and mold resistance and enhanced durability are attributes that are very important for this market,” he says. Last November we posted a story about ICI’s agreement to sell $160 million of the EcoScapes to a Brazilian developer.

(Graphic credit: ICI, Inc.)