Partnerships with Indigenous Peoples
Through multiple collaborations and partnerships with Indigenous communities, we support a positive future for First Nations. In support of our shareholder’s commitment Indigenous Peoples and their interests, we are proud to work alongside the Nations to create employment, training, commemoration, procurement and mentorship opportunities.
Heather Lands and Jericho Lands, Vancouver
As part of its ongoing joint venture partnership with the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh (MST) Nations, we are committed to integrating their knowledge and culture into the planning and design of the Heather Lands and Jericho Lands projects.
To support this integration, we’ve appointed one member from each of the MST Nations to serve as a cultural liaison to both developments. As liaisons, the members are advising the project managers and design teams on various matters, including strategies for engaging with MST communities, incorporation of cultural expression and traditional teachings, and content development. In particular, the liaisons are assisting with the creation of a Cultural Interpretive Strategy, which will help build a public understanding of MST values and the unique stories associated with the Heather Lands and Jericho Lands sites.
With an expected project life span of 15-to-20 years, our redevelopment of the 310-acre/125-hectare Wateridge Village/Village des Riverains is well underway. When complete, this ambitious redevelopment will feature various housing forms and be home to 10,000 residents in a mixed-use community that is sustainable, walkable, cycling and transit-oriented. The village is also being designed to pay homage to the Algonquin people; it will feature three commemorative parks with multilingual signage, two streets named after Algonquin veterans and Indigenous artwork incorporated into gateways and entrances. Additionally, the Algonquins of Ontario are involved in all stages of the site’s revitalization and, as part of a mutual agreement signed in 2010, have taken the opportunity to acquire lots or blocks for their own development.
Building on this agreement, our partnership also extends to the 299 Carling Avenue site, located near Ottawa’s downtown core. While the 3.4-acre/1.4-hectare property is currently a vacant parcel of land with 300 parking stalls, it will soon realize a new vision as a mixed-use community with ground-oriented commercial uses.
Downsview Park, Toronto
At Downsview Park, in Toronto, we acknowledge that the Downsview lands are on the traditional territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit who signed Treaty 13 (1805), and that these lands have also been the historic homelands of the Huron Wendat and Haudenosaunee people.
In 2018, we hosted the inaugural Masters Indigenous Games (MIG) at the Park with a goal to provide Indigenous adults the opportunity to compete against their peers in a series of contemporary and traditional sports. The games brought together hundreds of athletes from across North America to compete in sport competitions, celebrate Indigenous wellness and the Indigenous cultures of Turtle Island (the name used by Indigenous communities to refer to North America). The event also included a cultural festival showcasing Indigenous artists, performers, storytellers and vendors, as well as an Embody the Spirit Powwow. The MIG is organized by Indigenous Sport & Wellness Ontario; the Mississaugas of the Credit were the host community partner of the games, while we were a major sponsor.
Additionally, in 2019 we opened our Sesquicentennial Trail at the Park. The 500-metre trail acknowledges both Indigenous Peoples who have been here since time immemorial and commemorates the milestone of Canada's 150-year anniversary of Confederation. The Mississaugas shared their knowledge for the various interpretive installations throughout the trail and the treaty table.
To learn more about our collaborations and partnerships with Indigenous communities, please read our latest corporate social responsibility report.