A state of the art multi purpose structure that will serve the Lower Kootenay Band administration was given the green light. Now the wheels are turning.

The $5.1 million project is funded through the First Nation’s Health Authority. Chief Jason Louie along with staff and project leaders gathered on Highway 21 where the new structure will be built for a breaking ground ceremony.

“I do want to acknowledge that this is the original village site of the Lower Kootenay Band. This is where all the community members lived at one time. It was also the site of the St.Peters Church which is no longer here. It was the vote of the community, our democracy has spoke loud and clear to remove it.”

The backdrop of the property is the Selkirk Mountain Range. The raised grounds also offer views of flatland leading to the Kootenay River. Chief Louie smiled as he looked over the grounds with shovel in hand.

“My only asking is that my office will be facing west. It’s just a beautiful site out here.”

The contract is fully signed by Chief Jason Louie and contributors to the project (Jensen Shields, Mycrestonnow.com staff)

Rendek and Associates will be building the structure, Terry Rendek was present on October 9, 2019 for the ceremony. Dave Kitazaki is an award winning architect who grew up in Kamloops, BC and is a member of the Xaxl’ip (Fountain) First Nation. His firm, dk Architecture, produced the designs.

Curtis Wullum LKB Director of Development services was present as well as Mark Fitz-Morris from the First Nations Health Authority.

The new building will not only revitalize the property but also free up much needed space.

“Houses which should be used for community members, we’ll be able to convert those back into homes. [The new administration building] will be a state of the art building.”

Construction is expected to be done by the end of August.