Métis Nation British Columbia Acquires Land in Surrey for Ambitious Project to Provide Housing, Child Care, Cultural Space, and More

Surrey, BC (November 1, 2021) – Métis Nation British Columbia (MNBC) is proud to announce the largest acquisition of land in the Nation’s history, in Surrey. The purchase is part of MNBC’s ambitious goal of creating Métis centres across the province in all seven regions. The $6,000,000 in funding, provided under the Canada-Métis Nation Housing Sub-Accord, gives the governing members of the Métis Nation control over the design, delivery and administration of housing services. The federal government’s 2018 budget outlined a $500 million investment over 10 years to support the Métis Nation’s housing strategy.

MNBC will be undertaking Nation-wide consultation on the project over the next number of years to help refine the project specifics. It is expected that this ambitious project will include a purpose-built space for MNBC’s Cabinet and the Senate. There are also plans to include space for the Métis Nation Governing Assembly, office space for local Chartered Communities, and cultural gathering spaces. In addition, MNBC is planning for culturally-relevant child care spaces and a broad array of housing options across the housing spectrum and which may also include below-market and market rate rentals, and below-market and market-rate ownership units. Through a competitive Request for Proposals (RFP) process, MNBC will engage a qualified development consultant to lead the development of this project, which is expected to be complete by 2027. 

Providing affordable housing, delivering Métis early years programs, and creating  gathering space for our Métis Chartered Communities is a key strategic goal of MNBC’s Cabinet. Over the coming months, MNBC will continue on its progressive agenda with more announcements to come. 

Quotes:

“MNBC has lacked a place where we could truly call home. Building a purpose-built building that has cultural gathering spaces, room for our governing assembly, Senate and Board of Directors is long overdue. The close proximity to rapid transit will allow ease of access for Citizens. In addition to having housing and child care spaces, we are going to continue raising our Nation to new heights.” – Lissa Dawn Smith, Acting President MNBC

“Region 2 is home to over 6,000 registered Métis citizens. Establishing a Métis footprint in the heart of the Lower Mainland ensures that much needed supports and services are there for generations to come.” – Louis De Jaeger, MNBC Director for Region 2 

“Investing in quality, affordable housing is going to provide a lasting legacy for MNBC and help build a sense of belonging in our regions and Métis Chartered Communities. Working with our grassroots Métis citizens we will continue pursuing these life-changing projects to improve the lives of our people. Long live the Métis.” – Dean Gladue, MNBC of Housing and Homelessness 

“Building a network of Métis early learning and child care programs is a pivotal moment in our Nation’s history. Ensuring that Métis children can attend early years programs at facilities that are culturally relevant and exposes them to the rich heritage we hold so near to our heart will have a long-lasting, positive effect on their lives. A dream come true.” – Debra Fisher, MNBC Minister of Education 

“Today’s exciting announcement will ensure that Métis families will have access to an array of affordable housing options here in Surrey, with culturally-relevant childcare services in place. This welcome announcement will further preserve and support the rich Métis heritage and culture that is alive throughout Surrey. Council and I are looking forward to seeing this development come to fruition.” – Doug McCallum, Mayor of Surrey