THUNDER BAY – BUSINESS – In a significant boost to Thunder Bay’s Smart Modular Canada, a local company specializing in modular building design, manufacturing, shipping, and installation, FedNor has announced a substantial investment of $1,380,000. This funding, disclosed by Patty Hajdu, Minister of Indigenous Services and Minister responsible for FedNor, alongside Thunder Bay—Rainy River MP Marcus Powlowski, aims to scale up the company’s operations.
Minister Hajdu stated, “Investing in housing construction innovators like Smart Modular is key to building more affordable housing. This investment will help scale up a one-of-a-kind Northern Ontario business. On top of creating good-paying jobs in the region, it also provides concrete support to remote and Indigenous communities that have important housing needs.”
Thunder Bay Rainy River MP Marcus Powlowski commented, “This is a fantastic investment: it’s going to create jobs and build our economy by growing a local business. It will also help address a serious need as many communities in Thunder Bay and the surrounding district struggle with affordable housing. Smart Modular Canada provides a unique service in Northern Ontario, and so supporting them means not only a chance to multiply successes but also to fill a gap.”
Smart Modular Canada, recognized as a rapidly growing business within a vital sector, stands to benefit immensely from this investment. It is expected to spur economic growth across Northern Ontario by bolstering other industries in the region, including mining and forestry. A significant aspect of the company’s expansion will be addressing housing shortages in First Nations communities and infrastructure requirements in natural resource sectors.
“We are proud to partner with FedNor in building Northern Ontario. This investment is going to help us to keep expanding, to create new, high-skill jobs, and to meet the housing needs of the region,” remarked Bill Boulton, President of Smart Modular Canada.
Notably, Smart Modular Canada is committed to developing trade skills through training programs, particularly targeting youth in First Nation communities. These programs offer training, mentoring, and career opportunities in construction.
The FedNor investment is set to create 15 new jobs and triple the production of modular homes, while also reducing waste. This step aligns with the broader goals of providing affordable housing and supporting remote and Indigenous communities with their housing needs.
Minister Patty Hajdu emphasized the importance of investing in housing construction innovators like Smart Modular, highlighting the creation of well-paying jobs and the support for Indigenous communities. Similarly, Marcus Powlowski underscored the investment’s significance in job creation and addressing affordable housing challenges in the region.
Bill Boulton, President of Smart Modular Canada, expressed pride in partnering with FedNor and optimism about the investment’s potential to fuel expansion, create skilled jobs, and meet regional housing needs.
Smart Modular Canada, unique in being the only modular home manufacturing facility in Northwestern Ontario, prides itself on producing affordable, quality homes. The company’s advanced facility and skilled workforce enable efficient, high-quality housing construction year-round.
The funding, part of the Northern Ontario Development Program (NODP) administered by FedNor, contributes to a broader effort by the agency. Since 2015, FedNor has invested over $314 million through the NODP, supporting 894 projects across Northern Ontario, focusing on community economic development, diversification, job creation, and fostering self-reliance.