VICTORIA ISLAND, ONT.—Decontie Construction, an Algonquin-Anishinabe company, will join a team tasked with leading the next phase of remediation work on an unceded and unsurrendered Algonquin territory.
The contract marks the first time an Algonquin-Anishinabe-owned company will lead a federal contract to remediate lands in the National Capital Region.
Decontie will carry out the work in partnership with Milestone Environmental Contracting Inc., together as Decontie Milestone Inc. The team was chosen after a public procurement process led by the National Capital Commission (NCC).
The remediation work, which will begin this fall, is expected to take about six months and create jobs for Indigenous workers.
“I remember coming to this landmark place as a child for celebrations, important causes and to make our presence known and voices heard,” said Wanda Thusky, a partner with Decontie Construction Inc., in a statement. “To stand here today, with the NCC, celebrating the start of a clean-up project led by our Algonquin-owned company means more than I can say.”
The NCC stated it was pleased the remediation of Victoria Island was awarded to an Algonguin-Anishinabe contractor who specializes in environmental remediation. The commission noted after the completion of the work in 2025, Victoria Island will be reopened to the public. Next steps for the site include the development of a master plan in partnership with the Algonquin-Anishinabe Nation to establish a place of special significance in the capital for Indigenous people and their cultural traditions.
“This contract is a stepping-stone for our people, our businesses and our nation as a whole,” said Patrick Dumont Jr., the Algonquin Nation’s procurement officer from the Algonquin Anishinabeg Nation Tribal Council. “When we heard that an Algonquin owned business (Decontie Milestone Inc.) was bidding on this contract we did everything possible to assist them. The NCC’s decision to hire an Algonquin-led company to lead the clean up of these lands contaminated by hundreds of years of settler industry will open the door to more contracts on our unceded Algonquin-Anishinabe territory. The capacity is there if you look for it and if the means are made available.”