(May 29, 2009) Koniag, Inc. and the Kodiak Area Native Association (KANA) broke ground on their new headquarters in Kodiak this week, marking the Corporation’s return to its roots in the area.
Located at 194 Dog Salmon Bay Road on Near Island, the 13,000-square-foot, two-story structure will look out on the bay and surrounding mountains. Sustainability is a fundamental goal of the project which establishes a long-term home base for both organizations. The building was designed with an emphasis placed on construction materials and assembly techniques that provide maximum benefit to the local economy. The building and landscaping will complement Kodiak’s unique geography. There will be opportunities to showcase indigenous artwork in the building and landscaped areas to connect users and visitors to area history.
“Koniag moved its headquarters out of Kodiak in the mid-1980’s during a period in the corporation’s history when we were struggling financially. The return of our headquarters to Kodiak in 2006 is a testament to the financial strength we have achieved through the hard work of everyone who has served on the board of directors or worked for the corporation over the past 25 years,” Will Anderson, president and CEO of Koniag, Inc., said. “The construction of this new office building is a signal both to our shareholders and the community that we’re back in Kodiak to stay, and we want to take an active role in our region.”
“With Koniag’s support and partnership, KANA is able to enhance its programs and service delivery. Our Board is proud and grateful to the Board and CEO of Koniag and to the Rasmuson Foundation for their extraordinary contribution, which together make our participation possible.” Andy Teuber, CEO, Kodiak Area Native Association said. “When our ANCSA Regional Corporation recognizes the unmet needs in our communities and supports those needs through investment, it inspires the confidence and support of other contributors.”
The project took ECI-Hyer architect Jae Shin two years to complete and he viewed it as a symbolic building – one that would re-establish a permanent home in Kodiak. “It was a very intimate project because of the relationship between community and culture. Balancing the relationship to the Alutiq culture made the project very challenging.” Criterion General, an Anchorage contracting company, began work at the site on May 1st.
In the spirit of regional unity, the groundbreaking for the new building commenced with a traditional Alutiiq lamp-lighting ceremony. Sun’aq tribal dancers also performed at the event.