FedNor assists three Dryden projects

FedNor support was announced last Wednesday to assist the City of Dryden in revitalizing and enhancing its downtown shopping area, as well as hiring a consultant to produce a socio-economic impact analysis study and a training centre of excellence study.
In addition, FedNor support was announced to the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board in order to install Internet protocol (IP) technology and other video network technology at the Dryden Regional Training and Cultural Centre.
“These FedNor projects will greatly assist the City of Dryden and the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board in building on the acknowledged strength of Dryden as a regional retail and service centre,” said Kenora MP Roger Valley.
“FedNor is committed to supporting projects that will create long-term sustainable economic benefits,” noted Joe Comuzzi, minister of state for FedNor.
“These investments in Dryden provide support for its urban infrastructure, and access to the communications technology that northern towns and First Nations require to succeed in the global marketplace,” he added.
FedNor is providing $500,000 to the City of Dryden for the downtown revitalization project, $70,640 for the two consultant studies, and $360,000 to the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board for the IP telecommunications and computer network technologies.
The City of Dryden’s downtown revitalization project will give the shopping area a complete facelift.
Planned upgrades of the exciting downtown core include the installation of banners and poles, new street lights, and green space to attract shoppers and visitors from the Trans-Canada Highway.
Other highlights of the design include a gateway intersection and improvements to the gateway underpass in 2004.
The socio-economic impact analysis study, meanwhile, will provide a clear understanding of the socio-economic impact the recent downsizing at Weyerhaeuser’s forest product mill complex had on the Dryden area.
It is expected that information in the study will be critical for strategic decision-making and future planning.
The training centre of excellence study is a major component of the overall diversification plan for the Dryden area.
This study will build on the results of the socio-economic impact analysis study in order to identify opportunities for establishing Dryden as a training “hub” for the area of Northwestern Ontario west of Thunder Bay.
As part of Dryden’s economic diversification strategy, the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board has partnered with the City of Dryden, Confederation College, and Keewaytinook Okimakanak Tribal Council to construct a 34,000 sq. ft., two-storey regional training centre.
Features include computer labs, training classrooms, a water operator training facility, meeting rooms, and seminar spaces, including a large 500-seat multi-use auditorium.
The centre will deliver full- and part-time adult and post-secondary educational services—as well as water operator and other types of training—to First Nations, municipalities, and other public-sector clients.
The centre also can provide large, innovative meeting spaces for conferences and meetings in the region.
Training services will be delivered access to computer services.
All rooms are being wired to provide video over IP format, enabling video inter-connectivity throughout the region.
“The downtown revitalization project is the number-one priority identified by city council and the community support is outstanding,” said Dryden Mayor Anne Krassilowsky.
“We are excited to see the rebirth of our downtown and the positive impact this will have on the city as a whole,” she added.
“We are proud to play a part in developing an innovative training centre and creating a skilled labour pool as well as employment opportunities in the region,” noted Janet Wilkinson, director of education for the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board.

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