By Morgan Taylor, Reporter
OKMULGEE, Oklahoma – The Muscogee (Creek) Nation Tribal Construction has many construction projects going on during this time and a few which are funded by the CARES Act funding.
MCN Tribal Construction Director Steve Emerson has a list of ongoing projects that are in the beginning stages and near completion. MCN Tribal Construction has been experiencing a larger than normal workload. Emerson attributes this workload to the impact of the Coronavirus.
There are three major projects underway that are CARES Act funded and must be completed by Feb.
“There is a lot to be done in a short amount of time,” Emerson said. “Our part in these large CARES Act projects is to hire a construction management group at-risk. They are at-risk because they have strict timeline and if they are not finished with the project by the end of that time, they are going to be stuck with paying liquidated damages every day for the rest of project.”
The projects include a new PPE/GSA Shipping and Receiving facility, Safe Space facility, and the MCN Meat Processing Plant.
“The PPE/GSA Shipping and receiving building will be located at the Industrial Site [in Okmulgee],” Emerson said. “This will basically be a warehouse and a data center. This site will be a total of 36,352 square feet.”
The 25,000 square foot Meat Processing Plant also utilizes Cares Act funding and will be built at the Duck Creek Community just south of Duck Creek Casino.
“I find the Meat Processing Plant project most exciting,” Emerson. “I think that it’s something we really need. During the pandemic, there was a shortage of meat. Many processing plants throughout the Nation have had to shut down. Everybody experienced the meat shortage; the prices were high, and the shelves were empty. If we would have had this going at the time it would have really helped the community.”
The third project funded by CARES Act is the 20, 484 square foot Safe Space facility to be located behind the Mvskoke Dome in Okmulgee. This space will be dedicated to providing a work space that allows employees to work from a space that uses social distancing.
“I feel really confident this will be completed by the deadline in February,” Emerson said. “The one that will be the riskiest is the meat processing plant. We are working weekly to finalize the design.”
There are also many other projects that are taking place at Tribal Construction that are not funded with CARES Act funding. Currently, the Tribal Construction crew is working on the Threeponds project, a housing project that is funded by Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
“Threeponds project is a housing project that will have 72 homes and a community center,” Emerson said. “This site is 40 acres and the crew are currently working on digging up and relocating 1.3 million cubic square feet of dirt. This is an exceptionally large project.”
Tribal Construction has another ongoing project with the College of Muscogee Nation.
“Right now, we are currently working on a Natural Resource Building at the College of Muscogee Nation (CMN),” Emerson said. “It’s a 4,800 square foot building. We [Tribal Construction] are acting as a general contractor and we are self-performing the plumbing for that project right now. Recently CMN has received another HUD grant and they have another future project for us.”
Funding has been set aside to hire temporary help through all projects for Tribal Construction until the end of Dec, as well as other departments across the Nation. Applications for positions can be found on the MCN website www.mcn-nsn.gov
Mvskoke Media will continue to report on upcoming Tribal Construction projects.