The Fond du Lac Planning Division provides financial and administrative support to economic development projects on the Reservation. Many Fond du Lac projects have grant funds tied to them for their development and construction. Below is a list of current and past projects with a brief description of each.
Journey Garden Social Enterprise - The Journey Garden is a collaborative effort between multiple Fond du Lac Divisions and programs to provide a summer work experience for Fond du Lac Youth. Middle and high school youth work in the garden 3 days a week for 8 weeks during the summer. They learn about planting, harvesting and processing fruits, vegetables and other wild foods and medicines. The youth set up a weekly Gatherers market on the corner of University and Big Lake Road from 12:00 – 2:00.
To learn more about the Social Enterprise Process check out these links from the Northland Foundation:
Media Coverage: FOX21 News Story
Aaniin/Fond du Lac Communications – Fiber to the Home – This is an initiative with financial assistance from the United State Department of Agriculture, United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, and the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development to construct a fiber to the home network to up to 1,500 homes on the Fond du Lac Reservation. The project is moving forward with bidding and ordering fiber cable, central offices, distribution equipment and submitting licensing paperwork with the FCC. The Planning and MIS Divisions are currently reviewing grant opportunities and applying to those agencies that are appropriate. Some services for this project will be turned on Fall 2018. View service offerings here (www.aaniin.net). To check availability and see a project map click here.
Language and Culture Building – This is a project with financial assistance from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development to build a Language and Culture Learning Center for the Fond du Lac Band. This project now has an architect which is Architectural Resources Incorporated. The three community meetings have been held and Architectural Resources compiled the results of the three meetings and made a presentation to the Reservation Business Committee.
Big Lake Road Trail – The Big Lake Road has been in development for several years. Funding for the project has now been secured and the engineering and right of way acquisition will be continue through the Winter of 2017. Construction will begin Spring of 2019.
Gitigaan – For the past 20 plus years the Planning Division has operated the Gitigaan Program for the Reservation. Gitigaan provided plants to 139 households and seeds to 111 households in 2018. We will be teaming up with the Resource Management Division to hold an end of season Fall Feast and Ganawenjigewin “Taking Care of Things” gathering on Thursday, September 27th.
Dual Language Signs – The Fond du Lac Reservation has developed agreement with Carlton and St. Louis Counties to develop Ojibwe and English road signs. These signs have been installed in various parts of the Reservation. Most recently, the Minnesota Department of Transportation and the Federal Administration has adopted guidance to allow dual language signs on state highways within Tribal boundaries.
Blandin Broadband Communities – For the past four years the Fond du Lac Band has been a Blandin Broadband Community. By participating in this program the Band was allowed access to grant funds to help pay for projects such as the App Camp at the Ojibwe School, the installation of 13 wireless hotspots, computer training, internet usage training, and PC’s for People.
Safety Plan – The Fond du Lac Band has completed a new Safety Plan for the Reservation. This plan will provide insight on transportation related safety issues on the Reservation and will provide strategies in resolving these issues. KLJ Engineers was hired to assist with this project.
Transportation Plan – The Fond du Lac Band hired a local agency, the Arrowhead Regional Development Commission, to assist the Reservation in the update the existing 20 year long range transportation plan. This plan will provide a strategy for Fond du Lac to develop road and transportation projects in the future.
WGZS Radio - Fond du Lac started a local non-commercial radio station called 89.1 WGZS “The Moon” which has been in operation since 2011.
Supportive Housing – In 2010 the Fond du Lac Band competed construction 24 units of supportive housing to the neediest population of Fond du Lac.
Veterans Housing – In 2012 the Fond du Lac Reservation finished 10 units of veteran’s supportive housing for the Band Veterans who are in need.
Assisted Living – 2010 the Fond du Lac Reservation completed the construction of 10 units of assisted to provide housing and services to the Reservation’s elders.
Cartwright Road – This was a cooperative project with the city of Cloquet that completely reconstructed Cartwright Road. This is an important transportation link for the Fond du Lac Reservation and local community.
Waterline Extension and Airport Road – This was also a cooperative project with the city of Cloquet, where the Band constructed 9,000 feet of water main to improve water quality and fire protection and the City repaved Airport Road and Trettel Lane to complete a large and much needed infrastructure project.