Urban reserve could be established on Kapyong Barracks with agreement slated to be soon reached in land battle
Published Wednesday, November 28, 2012 5:25PM CST
Last Updated Wednesday, November 28, 2012 6:37PM CST
A seven-year-long battle between the federal government and multiple First Nations over Kapyong Barracks could soon end with sources suggesting a deal is nearing completion, possibly paving the way for an urban reserve at the Winnipeg site.
Sources have said a deal over the land, located at the corner of Kenaston Boulevard and Grant Avenue, could be reached by as early as Nov. 30.
CTV News is told the site could become a new urban reserve if an agreement over the land is indeed reached.
“That has to be resolved as soon as possible I'm extremely disappointed it's taken as long as it has, and I'm hopeful there will be a solution in the near future,” said Winnipeg Mayor Sam Katz.
In 2006, Winnipeg’s mayor and Manitoba First Nations leaders travelled to Muskeg Lake in Saskatchewan to see operations at an urban reserve there. The location has 20 businesses and employs 400 people. It also generates millions of dollars in revenue each year.
Treaty Commissioner Jamie Wilson said there are 49 urban reserves in Saskatchewan but currently only one in Manitoba.
“First Nation economic development zones are part of the solution for creating economic prosperity for First Nations, which equals prosperity for the rest of the province,” said Wilson.
The newly opened IKEA is located south of Kapyong on Kenaston and is predicted to regularly draw thousands of shoppers to the area, while Kapyong still sits vacant.
“It has a phenomenal impact on vacant land that is prime for development, that's sitting there, and millions of dollars are being wasted every year,” said Katz.
Katz said the battle over Kapyong has also stalled the city’s plans to widen Kenaston, but he hopes that is not for much longer.