The former MSA Hospital lands in Abbotsford are being returned to the Matsqui First Nation.
The lands, located at 2179 McCallum Rd., were officially re-acquired on Oct. 22, according to a press release.
Matsqui will now be working with Vancouver-based development partner District Group and the City of Abbotsford to redevelop the site. Current plans are for a mixed-use project that will include rental housing, commercial and institutional uses.
Matsqui representatives stated they are open to discussions with FHA for a future health-care facility on the lands.
The acquisition of the nine acres concludes many years of negotiations between the Matsqui people, Fraser Health Authority and the province of British Columbia.
“It is incredibly meaningful and satisfying to see this land back in Matsqui’s hands,” stated Matsqui Chief Alice McKay in the press release. “Many of our members were born at the old hospital here; it is a very special moment for our community.”
Matsqui’s core traditional territory extends along the Fraser River from Crescent Island to Sumas Mountain, and southward beyond the Canada-United States border. Matsqui has long focused on the return of the lands as one of the few undeveloped parcels within its core traditional territory. Matsqui representatives praised the partners involved in facilitating the agreement.
“This land is a legacy for our membership,” stated Matsqui Coun. Brenda Morgan. “We have worked so hard to have this land returned, and we intend for it to stay in Matsqui’s hands for generations to come.”
“We’re so thrilled to have partnered with Matsqui First Nation and to get started on the municipal permitting approvals to bring this exciting development to the community as soon as possible,” stated Michael Nygren, the CEO of District Group.