By Alan Coutts, President and CEO
Aroland First Nation is located 20 km west of Nakina in Northwestern Ontario and holds the traditional lands at the south end of the proposed North-South all-season road to the Ring of Fire.
The Noront team visited Aroland in mid-May to better understand the vision and economic development strategy that Chief and Council have for their community.
Together, we toured the reserve and drove the Anaconda Road, which will be upgraded to serve as the first leg of a shared community and industrial corridor heading north. We also visited an old CN Rail track at Cavell, which may be reused as a trans-load facility to move ore from the Ring of Fire off trucks and onto railcars.
On June 6, 2019, Chief Dorothy Towedo signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Noront on behalf of her community. It formalized the relationship between Aroland and Noront and establishes an ongoing working and communication protocol. Everyone involved understands that early dialogue about the project and the associated infrastructure development is key to our joint success.
“Our First Nation is encouraged by Noront’s inclusive approach to advancing mutually beneficial opportunities with First Nations. Early dialogue is key,” said Chief Dorothy.
Signing the MOU also made Aroland a Noront shareholder, and we were thrilled to have Chief Dorothy join other shareholders at our Annual General Meeting (AGM) the following day. Also attending the AGM was Chief Bruce Achneepineskum of Marten Falls First Nation.