What We Do > Our Expertise > Working with Indigenous Partners

Working with Indigenous Partners

Part of a nationwide conversation

Indigenous Peoples have been planning since time immemorial, and to this day, are leading cutting edge planning initiatives on their homelands.  Many Indigenous development groups are exploring opportunities that will contribute to the self-determination and prosperity of current and future generations while creating safe, equitable, and affordable  neighbourhoods aligned with the cultural, social, political, and environmental objectives of the community.

Urban Strategies works with Indigenous development corporations, community members and practitioners. We advise on land use strategies to advance the aspirations and needs of clients using a highly collaborative process, building on dialogue with advisors from Indigenous communities, and with the wider communities through a range of outreach methods.  In some cases, we work alongside Cultural Liaisons  to integrate traditional knowledge, values, and cultural elements into the process and outcomes. Cultural Liaisons are members of their Nations who form part of the core project team,  providing an ongoing link between the project team and the community  as well as advice and guidance to the broader team on how to approach planning, design and community engagement in a meaningful and culturally-appropriate way.

Group of people and staff smiling.
Tewin site visit

Projects incorporating Indigenous perspectives

We frequently work with Indigenous design and placekeeping practitioners on public and private-sector projects and in industry leadership roles.  We recognize the invaluable contributions of these practitioners and the positive impacts achieved by incorporating Indigenous design perspectives into projects  to advance development that upholds Indigenous cultural priorities and increases visibility of Indigeneity in urban centres.

MST Cultural Design Principles graphic.
Cultural Whorl, MST Nations

In addition, our team regularly collaborates with and works alongside Indigenous planning, design, and engagement practitioners on both private and public sector projects and in industry leadership roles. These collaborations help broaden our firm’s knowledge, skills, and experiences – contributing to the firm’s culture of ongoing learning and commitment to reconciliation.

  • Comprehensive Planning and Urban Design Strategies
  • Interested Party and Community Engagement
  • Transit Oriented Development Strategies
  • Feasibility Analysis
  • Policy Review
  • Site Planning
  • Development Approvals
Don Valley ReConnects Rendering.

Don Valley ReConnects

2022 – Present

The Don Valley ReConnects project aims to re-purpose the privately-owned Flemington Park Golf Club into 40 acres of new open public space and create approximately 2,170 residential units (5% affordable housing) along with a new cultural programming space.

Simon Fraser University

Simon Fraser University

2017 – 2020

The 2065 Campus Master Plan will help SFU direct growth and reinvestment, support decision-making and dialogue, define projects, and most importantly continue to create a remarkable place and community on the top of Burnaby Mountain. 

Rendering of Runway Combined Winter-Summer.


2018 – Present

Master planning a 500-acre former airfield area into a new vibrant, resilient and green neighbourhood in Toronto.

Aerial image of downtown Toronto


2021 – Present

Urban Strategies is working with QILP on a transit-oriented complete community development located in the Quayside lands.

Rolling hills with trees in the background.

Taza Development

2015 – 2016

One of the largest First Nations developments in North America. Taza is master-planned to embrace Indigenous culture, sustainability, and forward-thinking solutions.