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Sioux Lookout markets lakefront property for commercial, residential development

Municipality thinks the shores of Bigwood Lake would be ideal for hotel, meeting space and new retail
Sioux Lookout entrance
(Northern Ontario Business file photo)

Sioux Lookout is rekindling interest in development at Bigwood Lake.

For more than a decade, the town has been touting the municipally owned waterfront property as a prime site for a lakeside hotel, a conference centre and retail development.

The northwestern Ontario municipality is making a renewed push in taking proposals for the sale of the 27-acre property, just east of the airport. 

In a news release last week, the municipality called it a “blank canvas for visionary projects”  such as a hotel and conference centre, complemented by restaurants, retail spaces, offices, “and much needed detached and multi-unit housing construction.”

The listed sale price is $410,000.

The town is making development as turnkey as possible. There are municipal services extended to the site with geotechnical, noise, traffic studies and environmental impact pre-development work already done.

Situated across Highway 516 from the airport, the town said the location would suit service providers and employees catering to local residents and travellers, particularly those visiting from the many remote First Nation communities that Sioux Lookout services.

The municipality said the deadline for development proposals is May 29. A selection will be made on July 17.

With a population that’s growing, Sioux Lookout leaders are making various moves to lure developers and businesses up Highway 72 to improve local services and amenities.

"The Bigwood property project is not simply about encouraging new construction; it’s about creating new pathways to success, increasing available employment and housing, and empowering local businesses,” said Mayor Doug Lawrance in a statement.

"Sioux Lookout is committed to nurturing progressive developments that bolster our economy, improve visitor experiences, and enhance the quality of life of our residents," said economic development officer Jen Esposito in the release. "We invite interested parties to explore this exciting opportunity and be part of Sioux Lookout's bright future."

“This project aligns with our commitment to sustainable growth,” adds town CAO Brian MacKinnon. “We look forward to collaborating with stakeholders and community members to ensure its success.”