The Assembly of First Nations is working with partners to develop a vision for the future use of an Indigenous Peoples space within the Parliamentary Precinct.
On June 21, 2017, the Prime Minister announced that the former American embassy located in Ottawa, would become a space for Indigenous peoples.
The future Indigenous Peoples Space will include the 100 Wellington Street building, and 119 Sparks Street (currently a CIBC bank). In July 2019, Canada committed to developing a dedicated Algonquin property between 100 Wellington Street and 119 Sparks Street.
“The space at 100 Wellington Street and the adjacent property will be an important space for all First Nations, Métis and Inuit leaders, governments and organizations to conduct intergovernmental business and strengthen relationships,”
The Indigenous Peoples’ Space will serve as a concrete and symbolic centerpiece for Indigenous Peoples and their governments to meet with other governments, institutions, citizens and visitors. It will provide space where Indigenous governments, organizations and institutions gather to:
Conduct intergovernmental functions and host events of a diplomatic nature.
Educate Canadians and visitors about the past, present and future of First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation achievements, contributions and cultures and their relationships with Canada.
The Indigenous Peoples’ Space is where Algonquin unceded territory is recognized and Nation to Nation-Crown relationships between Canada, First Nations, Inuit, and the Métis Nation are conducted in the spirit of reconciliation.
Building the Future
In 2019, the Assembly of First Nations commissioned a team of Indigenous architects to design a vision for what the spaces could look like. The team worked to design a potential space that encompassed the many Indigenous Peoples living on this land.
Wanda Dalla Costa Architect
Wanda Dalla Costa
David T Fortin Architect Inc.
David T Fortin
THE INDIGENOUS PEOPLES SPACE:
Starting the Conversation
DAVID T FORTIN ARCHITECT
WANDA DALLA COSTA ARCHITECT
Unceded Algonquin Territory | 100 Wellington Street & 119 Sparks Street, Ottawa ON
“Design something our grandmothers would be proud of” - Elder Winnie Pitawanakwa
“As Indigenous architects, we recognize the potential narrative of this historic site, and its challenges. This is a vision of Indigenous values, honouring our Elders and the Algonquin Peoples. We design by listening and working collaboratively toward an expression that celebrates Indigenous presence. This is our first priority.”
Getting it Right
The Algonquin Nation
“The recognition of Algonquin title is integral to ensuring this project continues in a good way and sets a tone to lead to better outcomes for First Nations and Canada. The Assembly of First Nations looks forward to continued collaborative efforts with the Algonquin Nation, Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, the Métis National Council and the federal government to ensure the future Indigenous Peoples Space will be a site for First Nations and other Indigenous peoples and governments to conduct intergovernmental business and advance their self-determination.”
In July 2019, Chiefs-in-Assembly honoured Grand Chief Verna Polson of the Algonquin Anishinabeg Nation Tribal Council for leading an 11-day demonstration in front of 100 Wellington Street. The demonstration resulted in written commitment for a dedicated Algonquin building and the building at 119 Sparks for the Indigenous Peoples Space project. Prior to the Grand Chiefs actions commitments on 119 Sparks were only verbal.
In July 2017, Chiefs-in-Assembly passed Resolution 29/2017, 100 Wellington Street, initiating a process to determine the most effective use of the 100 Wellington Street space as an Indigenous Peoples space and to make sure that the appropriate protocols with the Algonquin Nations were engaged.
The Assembly of First Nations continue to advocate for the full inclusion of the Algonquin Nation in the project as directed in recently passed Resolution 29/2019, 100 Wellington.
The Assembly of First Nations acknowledges the location of 100 Wellington Street is on the traditional, unceded territories of the Algonquin Nation.
The project is located in Ottawa Ontario, within Canada’s Parliamentary Precinct. The Parliamentary Precinct, on the southern banks of the Ottawa River, is the site of Canada’s Parliamentary System. The Precinct is undergoing rehabilitation, expected to be complete in 2028.
The lands on which the Parliamentary Precinct sits on have been important sites for First Nations, particularly the Algonquin Nation, since time immemorial. The Assembly of First Nations supports the Algonquin Nation in their work to secure title to lands within Algonquin territory.
Resources & Background
AFN Press Release: AFN National Chief Calls on Canada to Recognize Unceded Unsurrendered Algonquin Title of Indigenous Peoples Space in Ottawa.