The Brunswick Point lands, located along the Fraser River where it meets the Salish Sea in Delta, have been at the centre of discussions between the Province, the families who were the previous land owners and the Tsawwassen First Nation (TFN).
Now the provincial government, Brunswick Point families and the TFN have reached a settlement that resolves a long-standing legal dispute over the expropriation of these lands in 1968 for port development purposes.
The agreement allows the provincial government to sell the Brunswick Point lands back to the previous owners, while still supporting the terms of the Tsawwassen treaty.
The agreement provides the following:
- Allows the Brunswick Point families to regain title to the Brunswick Point lands at a pre-negotiated purchase price.
- Keeps the lands in the Agricultural Land Reserve.
- Requires a farm use covenant, restricting the lands to agricultural use, and a conservation covenant that further conserves the lands for soil-based agriculture and migratory bird habitat. It is the intent of the parties that the conservation covenant will be monitored and managed by Ducks Unlimited Canada.
- Consolidates the land into four new large parcels.
- Maintains provincial ownership of dikes and rights-of-way.
Brunswick Point history:
- In a 2006 lawsuit filed in B.C. Supreme Court, the Brunswick Point families asked the courts to grant them first right of refusal to buy the lands back from the Province.
- This would have conflicted with the Tsawwassen treaty, which requires that TFN be provided the first right of refusal for 80 years should the leasehold lands be sold outside the Brunswick Point's families.
- About 1,660 hectares of land including Brunswick Point, in Roberts Bank area, were expropriated in 1968 for port development. However, construction of the port took place on filled land and the expropriated lands were later leased back to the previous owners for agricultural purposes.
Senior Public Affairs Officer
Ministry of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation