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The Cree Development Corporation announces the completion of the Request for Proposals process for the Feasibility Study for Phase I – Infrastructure Program for La Grande Alliance

Press Release

NEMASKA, QC, April 15, 2021 – The Cree Development Corporation is proud to announce the completion of the Request for Proposals (RFP) process for the Feasibility Study for Phase I – of the Memorandum of Understanding on the Cree-Quebec Sustainable Infrastructure Development Program in the Eeyou Istchee James Bay Region. The process was developed through collaboration between the Cree Nation and various ministries of Gouvernement du Québec, continuing the tradition of working together through a Nation to Nation relationship based on mutual respect. All representatives worked hard to ensure the credibility and professionalism of the process, implementing such measures as the anonymization of bids to ensure impartiality and fairness in their assessment.

It is with pride the CDC announces that the “Vision Eeyou Istchee” Consortium has been awarded the mandate to conduct the study. Vision Eeyou Istchee is a team composed of professionals and specialists from a variety of companies well-known in the James Bay-Eeyou Istchee region; Stantec, Systra and Desfor, with assistance from KPMG. The group brings tremendous expertise in the area of economics, rail and road design as well as a trusted experience in social and environmental studies to help guide the CDC in evaluating the various components that make up Phase I of La Grande Alliance. Most importantly, the team brings an approach in which Cree hunters, fishers and trappers as well as communities are engaged at the beginning of and remain the focal point of the Feasibility Study process.

It is important to thank all bidders who took the time and effort to develop and submit proposals for the Feasibility Study that is innovative and unique in its effort to ensure that all people and communities of Eeyou Istchee have the opportunity to contribute in a meaningful way to the conception and design of transportation infrastructure throughout the region.

The study will be carried out with the close participation of the Grande Alliance Community Information Officers (GACIOs), recently hired in several Cree communities and representatives of the Jamesian communities in the region.

Quotes:

“We are embarking on a journey that will mark the beginning of a new relationship between First Nations and how infrastructure and any development is planned on the lands on which they depend. The upcoming Feasibility Study is innovative in that Cree communities and land users will be the primary voice in contemplating and planning infrastructure with a view to promoting true balance between traditional activity and development. A definite and encouraging sign that times are changing was that three of the four bidders had built teams which included local Cree community members. It was clear that the winning bidders, the Vision Eeyou Istchee Team, understood the importance of ensuring that the vision must come from community members and land users and so we are excited to take the first step in imagining a brighter future for Eeyou Istchee with them!”

Davey Bobbish, President, Cree Development Corporation

“We are very proud and honored to partner with the Cree Development Corporation (CDC) for their Grande Alliance vision, which will contribute to the development of Cree communities, increase interconnectivity and protect the Northern Quebec region. This study aims to improve the communities’ quality of life through the expansion of the transportation network. It will be carried out with the utmost respect for the land and Cree heritage, and will integrate sustainable development practices.”

Alessandro Cirella, Project Director, Vision Eeyou Istchee (Stantec, Desfor and SYSTRA joint venture, in cooperation with KPMG)

For further information: [email protected]

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