Oodena Celebration Circle

Winnipeg, Manitoba

Photo Credits: HTFC and Tourism Winnipeg

CASE STUDY

Initial Research by: Kathryn McCudden

Edited by: Samantha Miller & Nicole Brekelmans

Case study compiled in 2019

 

 

Project: Oodena Celebration Circle

Type of Urban Strategy: Indigenous 

Type of ProjectInterpretive Design

LocationThe Forks, Winnipeg, Manitoba

Date Designed/Planned: 1992

Construction Completed1993

DesignerGarry Hilderman & Glenn Manning (HTFC Planning and Design)

 

 

Oodena Celebration Circle is one of the central projects within the Forks – a cultural and historic site in the middle of Winnipeg. Near the geographic, historic, and cultural centre of the city, Oodena is appropriately named, loosely translating from Ojibwe as “the heart of the city” (Hilderman, n.d.).  Of course, the location of the site has been important for far longer than the city has existed.  People have been gathering at the junction of the Assiniboine and Red Rivers for nearly 8,500 years (Hilderman, n.d.).  At 25 years old, Oodena is a recent addition to the site, yet an important part of its modern history. It is part of a collection of projects at the Forks built as the city tried to recover some of its riverfront from the railway: one might call it part of Winnipeg’s waterfront renaissance. The design for Oodena aims to provide a spiritual centre for the Forks that is multicultural and inclusive while honouring the site’s history and restoring its purpose as a gathering space.