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Repairing Mark Kalluak Hall high on priority list in Arviat

'That place is used for everything,' mayor says
Members of the food hamper production teams prepare food and cleaning supplies at the Mark Kalluak Hall for delivery during the pandemic in Arviat on Dec. 1, 2020.

If there's one thing each of the seven communities across the Kivalliq region have in common, it's that their community hall is a venue to celebrate their culture.

And, if the community outgrows its hall, or if the hall is in dire need of repair and has to be closed temporarily, a piece of the community's heart shuts down with it.

And, arguably, perhaps nowhere in the Kivalliq does that ring more true than in Arviat, where nearly 35.5 per cent of the population is under the age of 15.

That tells Arviat Mayor Joe Savikataaq Jr. he has a big problem on his hands.

Savikataaq said the hamlet is having a major issue at its community hall, where problems with the floor and foundation have led to it being closed for repairs.

He said the hamlet is working on that quickly because the building is vital to so many things that happen in Arviat.

I'm hoping that the repairs will be successfully done at our Mark Kalluak Hall, so that we can open it back up to the public as soon as possible,” said Savikataaq.

That place is used for everything: court, weddings, teenage dances, dance competitions, you name it. And, every single day, there are programs run in there for the kids in Arviat.”

Savikataaq said the community is also hard at work preparing for (Igluliuqatigiingniq) Nunavut 3,000.

He said there's a lot of work that goes into prepping and developing all the lots in preparation for the housing units that will be arriving in Arviat, but there's a lot more to it than that.

This is not only providing lots. This is also to plan for roads, water, sewage, garbage and lighting systems. We have to get the Qulliq Energy Corp. to put up utility poles.

So, it's quite the task to be doing all that and, at the same time, keep up with the demand for the increased services that will be required.

There is a lot of behind-the-scenes work that's being undertaken every single day. A lot of work. And we don't need to add our community hall to the list, so, hopefully, it will be reopened to the public again soon.”

About the Author: Darrell Greer, Local Journalism Initiative

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