The Grand Opening of the newly constructed Qikiqtait Centre in Sanikiluaq, Nunavut is scheduled for November 2023!
The Qikiqtait Centre supports creation of the Qikiqtait marine and terrestrial protected area, and is a major accomplishment for:
1. Renewable energy infrastructure in the North;
2. Reconciliation and community capacity building; and
3. Progress achieving Inuit-led stewardship towards international biodiversity targets and sustainable development goals.
Funded through the ECCC Nature Fund with support from Cannor and Northern REACHE, the facility supports a community vision for the development of conservation economies, training and knowledge transfer.
The Qikiqtait Centre lobby features a stunning exhibit showcasing the unique local culture, natural history and vision for stewardship of the region for future generations.
The Qikiqtait Centre is designed around facilitating knowledge exchange, including the cutting-edge modular meeting room.
The facility is one of the most energy efficient buildings in the North, set to become the first net-zero commercial building in Nunavut when the Sanikiluaq wind farm comes online. The renewable energy and efficiencies of the building include structural insulated panels, solar rooftop, air and water heat recapture, heat pumps, battery storage and much more.
Eider down, the warmest feather in the world, is at the core of the exhibit and unique culture and innovation of Sanikiluarmiut, as featured in People of a Feather. The exhibit features traditional eider clothing, modern eider down programs and products alongside interpretive panels for environmental stewardship of the islands.
The design of the building is specifically intended to facilitate a whole-of-community collaborative approach, providing a space to meet to share knowledge and work together for the benefit of the region.
Lab space provides capacity for research jobs in the community with our academic partners working on marine and terrestrial ecosystem monitoring. Samples can be stored and processed in support of ongoing community-driven research programs including sensitive water, chemical and biological analyses. Community members and youth are being trained on scientific techniques including analyses related to wildlife health and food security.
The three bedroom residence upstairs provides capacity for longer term stays by partners bringing jobs and training in support of community-led conservation economies.
One of the upstairs bedrooms can also be converted to office space for visiting programs. The modularity of the facility helps flexibility to support diverse programs and opportunities for the community.
The main floor includes office space to facilitate coordination among community organizations, including the Sanikiluaq Hunters and Trappers Association, Arctic Eider Society, QIA, fisheries and other programs related to environmental stewardship of the region.
A small community reference library in the lobby/exhibit area supports sharing reports, project outcomes and knowledge transfer.