Economic Development

The Esquimalt Nation is a small urban nation on southern Vancouver Island belonging to the Coast Salish language group. The Nation’s 314 Members are descendants of the Lekwungen People. The Nation is adjacent to the Songhees Nation, the Township of Esquimalt, and the Town of View Royal and it is in close proximity to the City of Victoria.

The Nation currently has 3.4 acres of net developable land for housing and another 19.25 acres of economic development lands for future use. For these reasons, a strategic Land Use Plan is important to ensure that the Nation’s growth is sustainable, meets the needs of the community, and encourages economic development.

Local Economic Features

The Esquimalt Nation reserve lands are divided north to south by the Esquimalt and Nanaimo Railway (E&N) and Admirals Road. Unlike larger, non-urban nations, the Esquimalt Nation has a limited land base of only 44.3-acres of land reserve area (see Table 1).

Table 1. Land areas by use or tenure Land Tenure

Total Area

44.3 acre

Percentage of Lands

Western Commercial Lands

11.6 acres

26.4%

Triangle Site

7.65 acres

16.7%

Total Area Designated for Housing

11.1 acres

25%

(7.7 acres currently developed for Existing Housing)

Certificate of Possession Lands

4.4 acres

10%

Other (Community, Parks, Neighbourhood Commercial)

6.3 acres

14.2%

Net Developable Community Lands (development footprint)

3.4 acres

7.7%

 

Future Economic Opportunities

Esquimalt Nation’s Administrative team is currently working on the Commercial Lands Development Strategy. This Strategy is intended to guide economic opportunities on-reserve and community development in line with the Nation’s intention to pursue job creation, employment and training opportunities, expanding community infrastructure, and improving on strategic relationships with local businesses and governments.

There are two parcels of property on the reserve being considered for economic development, which includes: 1) the ‘Triangle Site’ at 7.65 acres, and 2) the ‘Western Commercial Lands’ which are 11.6 acres and include a significant component of waterfront lands. To date, the parcels are designated for: retail, commercial, mixed use, residential, and light industrial.