Government of Yukon and Chu Níikwän partner to open more than 150 lots for homes

by ahnationtalk on November 29, 202289 Views

Nov 28, 2022

The Government of Yukon has signed a $2.5-million loan agreement with the Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s (KDFN) arms-length development corporation Chu Níikwän Limited Partnership (CNLP), for a new residential land development project at Copper Ridge West in Whitehorse. The project is expected to create more than 150 lots for single-detached homes and townhomes.

The Copper Ridge West project marks the first large-scale housing development project on First Nations Settlement Land in the Yukon. It is a historic achievement that will help unlock the economic benefits of First Nation final and self-government agreements, and address Whitehorse’s housing shortage.

The Yukon Housing Corporation is administering the loan through its Developer Build Loan Program, which was recently expanded to include financing for residential land development in addition to residential construction projects. The program is designed to support more private and First Nations initiatives.

The loan agreement with CNLP is for Phase 1 of the Copper Ridge West project, expected to begin in spring 2023. CNLP may be seeking additional loans for Phase 2 of the project. The total development cost for the project is estimated at $19.3 million. Our partnership with Chu Níikwän is a critical and positive step forward for First Nations and the Yukon government in addressing a shared interest in increasing housing supply in the Yukon. We know we need to support more land development projects to accommodate our growing population while also providing exciting new business opportunities for First Nations Together, we are working together on building a future that provides all Yukoners with the opportunity to have a home that is adequate, suitable and affordable.”

Minister responsible for the Yukon Housing Corporation Ranj Pillai

Strong partnerships are the foundation of successful projects. As Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s  development corporation, Chu Níikwän is continuing to build on past success and realize the economic potential of our final and self-government agreements. This project will make more residential lots available for Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s Citizens and for Yukoners

Kwanlin Dün First Nation Chief Doris Bill

This historic intergovernmental residential project lays the groundwork for much needed, market friendly housing solutions on Kwanlin Dün First Nation settlement land in the City of Whitehorse. Finding a new way to work together represented many real challenges and would not have been possible without unprecedented cooperation from all parties. This development provides a solid framework for other Yukon First Nations to pursue and build upon and I am very proud to be a part of it.”

Chu Níikwän LP CEO Rick O’Brien

Quick facts

  • Upon its completion, Copper Ridge West project is expected to provide over 150 lots for single detached houses and townhomes. CNLP intends to sell its leasehold interest to the public at market rates.
  • The Copper Ridge West project is indicative of a broader shift in the Yukon’s land development industry, where First Nations and private sector landowners are becoming increasingly involved in large-scale land development projects.
  • Apart from the Yukon government, First Nations are the largest landowners in the Yukon. Settlement land owned by Kwanlin Dün First Nation and Ta’an Kwäch’än Council covers about 10 per cent of the total land area in Whitehorse.
  • In recent years, Kwanlin Dün First Nation has taken critical steps to prepare to develop and lease Settlement Land for economic opportunities. To date, Kwanlin Dün is the only First Nation with some Settlement Land titled in the Yukon’s Land Titles Office, providing certainty of exclusive possession of that land for the duration of the lease.
  • In September 2022, the Yukon Housing Corporation acquired the legal authority to expand its Developer Build Loan Program to support private and First Nations residential land development projects in the Yukon.

Contact

Renée Francoeur
Cabinet Communications
867-334-9194
renee.francoeur@yukon.c

Josh Long Communications, Yukon Housing Corporation
867-446-3354
joshua.long@yukon.ca

NT5

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