Saturday, August 20, 2022

Indigenous Peoples Experience receives award for excellence

The Urban Land Institute Americas Award for Excellence recognizes Indigenous Peoples Experience’s focus on acknowledgement, reconciliation, and the need for Indigenous education.

It was announced on July 13, 2022 that Fort Edmonton Park will receive the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Americas Award for Excellence for its Indigenous Peoples Experience. The ULI jury visited the Indigenous Peoples Experience in June and specifically noted the immersive experience. The exhibit was developed through integration with Memorandum of Understanding and Cooperation (MOU) Partners, the Confederacy of Treaty Six First Nations, and the Métis Nation of Alberta, alongside Elders and community members. The City of Edmonton remains committed to building long-term relationships with Indigenous Peoples, and through this project recognizes the power of embracing equitable engagement and integration throughout all stages of project development. These are areas that made this project stand out from other nominees. 

“The Indigenous Peoples Experience at Fort Edmonton is a place of learning, of hope and of continued reconciliation. It is such an honor to have this space that celebrates and shares the rich history and legacy of the Indigenous peoples who originally called this land home right here in our city,” said Edmonton Mayor Amarjeet Sohi. “It comes as no surprise to learn this important and impressive exhibit has been recognized on the international stage. I encourage all Edmontonians to visit this space.”

Deep conversations with more than 50 Indigenous Elders, historians, educators and community members informed the content shared in the exhibit. The stories and artwork come directly from Indigenous perspectives gathered through engagement with more local Indigenous nations, historical documents and research. Music was written and composed by local award-winning Indigenous musicians and performers through an artist residency.

Stantec was appointed the portfolio project manager, representing the project owner to manage the design and construction of the Fort Edmonton Park expansion project portfolio. Stantec also performed work as the local Architect of Record under Nassal-nFusion, who was the Prime Consultant for the Indigenous Peoples Experience.

“Receiving a ULI Award for Excellence is a great honor for this project team and Stantec as a whole,” said Heidi McGurk, major projects lead, Stantec. “This recognition reinforces our team’s passion to create a space that educates and celebrates the experiences and culture of Indigenous Peoples. Awards like this bring more awareness to the never-ending importance of learning from Elders to keep truth and reconciliation top of mind, and we are so proud to have played a role in this project.

“The Indigenous Peoples Experience demonstrates the power of equitable development and importance of creating projects to authentically empower people to speak about their own culture,” said Martin Zurauskas, Managing Director of nFusion. “As Prime Consultant, the Nassal-nFusion team was focused on developing and designing a platform to share this knowledge and culture in an engaging and accessible way, and we are thrilled to be recognized by Urban Land Institute.”

The Indigenous Peoples Experience recently received a Thea Award for Outstanding Achievement – Heritage Center.

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