It has now been over 18 months since the modules for the Constance Lake First Nation six-plex were delivered to the community. Since then, this innovative building has created a lot of interest not only in other First Nations communities but also in many other communities throughout Ontario. The ability to build in a cost-effective, energy-efficient manner with a short-term building cycle has been a real benefit to those looking to copy this project.
Gilles Alary of Boreal Homes has been providing new home solutions for First Nations communities in Northern Ontario for over 10 years. “This multi-unit project was a unique opportunity”, commented Alary, as the modules were unloaded off the flatbed trucks after their 12 hour journey from the Guildcrest factory located in Morewood, south of Ottawa. “This is an important project for Constance Lake, for Guildcrest and for us”, says Alary.
For those looking to modify these plans or re-design to a bungalow style of building, Guildcrest welcomes the opportunity to review how this can be achieved. The proposed Elder's Complex for the Alderville First Nation is a good example how this technology can be adapted to the individual needs of the community.
The housing units now finished in Constance Lake are two storey, three bedroom townhouses with 1½ bathrooms. Each home is 1,124 square feet in size with generous living areas.
Modular homes are built in large sections in the factory, transported by truck to the site and set on the foundation using a crane. There is usually just a few weeks of “site work” to do before the Housing Authority can be handed their keys. In this case, the homes were constructed of eight modules that set next to and on top of one another to form the complete building. On-site work consists of what Alary calls “stitching” the modules together. This means finishing the spaces between the modules, inside and out, hooking up the electrical and plumbing between the modules then to the local power, water and sewage supplies.
Peter Broeren, Sales Manager for Guildcrest Homes sees this as another important project for the company. “Although we build homes for several First Nations communities, this project has been particularly rewarding. With everything we hear in the news about housing challenges in the north and in remote communities it feels good be part of the solution.”
Guildcrest Homes is a modular home builder with their factory located in Morewood, Ontario, near Ottawa. They build 300 homes each year and deliver them throughout Ontario and Western Quebec.