Our Vancouver office advised the Fraser Heath Authority on its sale of the former Matsqui-Sumas Abbotsford hospital lands, a nine-acre site, to the Matsqui First Nation, which is intended for redevelopment into community care facilities, housing, retail, and park space.
The lands fall within the Matsqui First Nation’s asserted traditional territories, which extend along the Fraser River from Crescent Island to Sumas Mountain, and southward beyond the Canada-United States border.
We were engaged to advise the Fraser Health Authority on Indigenous peoples’ consultation (including issues related to the Crown’s duty to consult, delegation, and private lands) for the sale of the site.
This matter is significant because it involved extensive negotiations with multiple levels of government and Indigenous peoples in an effort to achieve accommodation and commence a multi-phased, multi-party urban renewal project. The transaction represents a step forward in the truth and reconciliation process between the Matsqui and the province.
The Fraser Health Authority is one of five regional health authorities in BC working together with the Ministry of Health. It provides health services to more than 1.8 million people, including services such as 12 acute care hospitals, an outpatient care and surgery centre, 7,760 residential care beds, mental health care, public health, home health services, and community care.
The team included Max Collett, Alia Bandali, Emily Chan and Sandra Ng.