The Complexity of Places – The Heather Street Lands
Heritage sites very often are much more intricate places than we may realize. In order for them to be appreciated, educational, positively experienced, and inspirational we need to effectively plan for and manage the multiple ways a place is significant to different groups of people.
The Heather Street Lands is a 21-acre parcel of land, located between 33rd Ave and 37th Ave, intersecting with Heather Street. It is co-owned by the MST Partnership, made up of the Musqueam Indian Band, the Squamish Nation and Tsleil-Waututh Nation, and the Canada Lands Company, a federal corporation that aims to incorporate former Government of Canada sites into the community. This site has different meanings to various groups and organizations around the city. There are many differing values present – cultural, social, historical, architectural, natural, economic – which span the physical and the intangible. There is also a painful history embedded here for First Nations people, with some representatives having requested the removal of a building on this site as a form of reconciliation.
In this evening’s session, we seek to provide a space to discuss these complex characteristics and contemplate possible ways to tackle such an intricate place.
Through this discussion, we wish to provide the opportunity for attendees to learn:
- What are the different ways that this land is viewed and valued by people?
- How do we plan for a place that has all these complex issues?
- What can be done to help resolve conflicting values?
- How can we, in our role as citizens, be a part of contributing to ongoing improvements in the planning of such complex places?
- Lyana Patrick is a member of the Stellat’en First Nation of the Carrier Nation in British Columbia, Canada and Acadian/Scottish on her mother’s side. She has worked in communications and education for over two decades. She did a Master’s degree in the Indigenous Governance program at the University of Victoria, and has worked at the University of British Columbia (UBC) for the last twelve years. During her time as Education Coordinator in the Division of Aboriginal People’s Health in the Faculty of Medicine, she gained deep knowledge and understanding of Indigenous health issues both in Canada and internationally. Most recently, she was the Research Manager for a Movember-funded project through UBC called the “Dudes Club,” a health promotion program for primarily Indigenous men in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside neighbourhood. She is currently finishing doctoral studies in the School of Community and Regional Planning at UBC.
- Julia Hulbert is a master’s student at SFU in Urban Studies writing her thesis on decolonizing municipal heritage programs. In addition to her studies, Julia is an active member of the community serving on the City of Vancouver’s Heritage Commission and as the Chair of the Kitsilano Thingery Board of Directors, a local lending library of things. Julia has over a decade of experience working in the cultural sector in Vancouver and Victoria and recently started consulting in arts and culture planning. Through this work, she provides a holistic perspective to complex planning issues. Julia is a current Radius Fellow, a fellowship that provides professional development training for individuals working in systems change. Her personal interests concern connecting people to place which she does through curatorial projects and community engagement activities.
- Varouj Gumuchian is from the Riley Park South Cambie Visions Group.