Royal Roads site “likely” to be returned to Songhees, Esquimalt First Nations


The land where Royal Roads University resides may soon be returned to the ownership of the Songhees and Esquimalt First Nations. Royal Roads currently leases the land from the Department of National Defence, which determined in 2016 that the land was in surplus of its needs and triggered discussions about the land’s future and Treaty negotiations. The Songhees First Nation and Esquimalt Nation have been in Treaty negotiations for nearly three decades and state that the land includes important archaeological sites. The university’s footprint could be changed by the negotiations, but Richmond News reports that the university is expected to continue to operate on the land. “We think [repatriation of the land] is one of the truest forms of reconciliation going and we firmly support it,” said Royal Roads’ VP of finance and operations Philip Twyford. “To have a university actually on treaty-settlement land is something that really energizes our staff.”

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