TS'ZIL LEARNING CENTRE
Description: Murphy Construction and the Lil’wat Nation worked together to be approved for funding of the 7.21 million-dollar grant from the Government of Canada’s Department of Innovation, Science and Economic Development to build the 23,000 square-foot post-secondary school, the Ts’zil Learning Centre. This landmark build replaces the existing trailers that served the Lil’wat Nation and the surrounding First Nation communities for the past 20 years. Being that tourism and the trades are in demand in the Whistler area, the Ts’zil Learning Centre is the first of its kind on First Nation land and now offers much needed education to thousands of students in the Sea to Sky. The impact to the Sea to Sky Community and the legacy for the future youth of the Lil’wat Nation is unprecedented.
Project Value: $8,000,000.00
Completion date: Aug 2018
Owner: Lil’wat Nation
Consultant: Murdoch + Company
As the Chief Executive Officer of the Lil'wat Business Group, I work almost daily with Murphy Construction Corp. to further our mutual goals of building capacity within the Lil'wat Nation and executing projects on and off reserve. Our relationship began with the construction of homes on-reserve as a capacity building and training program, while delivering cost effective and quality housing. Since then, we have also pursued larger projects including the $8,000,000 Ts'zil Learning Centre, a new health facility, and competitively bidding on and winning the construction contract for the Mid-Station Gondola Barn as part of Whistler Blackcomb's historic investment into on-mountain infrastructure. Murphy has maintained an approximately 80% Indigenous workforce with 100% of own forces through that time, the majority of whom are in registered apprenticeship programs.
Murphy Construction Corp.'s impact on the Lil'wat Nation and Pemberton communities has been significant. In addition to the incredible training and employment program that has been developed, Murphy gives back through sponsorships, mentorship, and coaching. With a primary focus on youth and recreation as a pathway for all residents of the Pemberton valley to achieve wellness, Murphy has had a substantial positive impact on both the Lil'wat and Pemberton communities.
Kerry Mehaffey Chief Executive Officer Lil'wat Business Group
"Mr. Speaker, the beautiful Pemberton Valley, north of Whistler, with Mount Currie rising 2,300 metres straight up from the valley floor, is the territory of the Lil'wat Nation.
For 20 years, starting with basic portable buildings with no proper heating, the Ts'zil Learning Centre provides a place where first nation people come to receive healing support, to overcome their residential school experiences, and to gain essential skills, such as trades certification or a high school diploma.
It is safe, familiar, and caring, and it is critical to the pride and progress of the Lil'wat people, in their way.
Today, with an $8 million investment by our government and an innovative partnership with locally based Murphy Construction, the beautiful new Ts'zil Learning Centre is rising up. Murphy Construction provides training, mentorship, and job creation for the Lil'wat Nation; 68% of Murphy Construction's employees are first nation.
Lamarr Williams attended Ts'zil, and conducted our tour. He is Murphy Construction's lead on the project. The lead for the Lil'wat Nation's approach to advanced education and training, through Ts'zil, is Lisa Fisher.
Murphy Construction and Lil'wat Nation are jointly, deeply committed to the Ts'zil Learning Centre. It is an honour to witness their approach. Ts'zil is showing us the way forward, together." - Pamela Goldsmith-Jones, Liberal MP Sunshine Coast, West Vancouver, Sea to Sky