First Nations plan to buy remaining Jericho lands from B.C. government

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Three First Nations plan to buy Jericho Lands
WATCH: The Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh Nations say they intend to buy a large parcel of extremely valuable land in Vancouver, the Jericho lands. Keith Baldrey explains why there are already concerns – Feb 12, 2016

The Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh Nations are planning to buy the provincial portion of the Jericho lands in West Point Grey, the B.C. government announced Friday.

A letter of intent has been signed by the three First Nations groups, allowing them to begin working with their communities to come to an agreement with the government on the 16-hectare parcel of land.

“If a sales agreement is concluded, it will allow for a meaningful community consultation process between the First Nations and the City of Vancouver on what the community would like to see with respect to future development of the lands,” the government said in a statement.

Any future development would follow regular zoning processes overseen by the City of Vancouver, and any sale would be done on “fair market housing”, the government added.

“The potential sale and transfer of the lands to the First Nations is a further step towards reconciling the First Nations’ interests in respect of rights and title to the traditional territories and confirms the settlement of all of the Nations’ claims to the Jericho lands,” said Minister of Technology, Innovation and Citizens’ Services Amrik Virk in a statement.

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In 2014, the three First Nations groups and the Canada Lands Company bought the other half of the Jericho lands, which was owned by the federal government, for approximately $207 million.

The property, located between West 4th and 7th Avenue and Trimble and Highbury Street, has been underused for decades. It includes a Canadian Forces garrison, historic buildings, trees and a childcare facility.

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