Nkwúkwma means “upstream, north”.  It is also a social name for the location of the modern town of Pemberton, on the unceded territory of Lil’wat7ul.


refers to the river, also known as Pemberton Creek, that flows on the South side of the Village of Pemberton and into One Mile Lake.


An equal partnership between Líl̓wat Capital Assets Limited Partnership and Pemberton Benchlands Development Corporation

Líl̓wat Capital Assets Limited Partnership is wholly owned by the Líl̓wat Nation for the purposes of fulfilling the needs of their community by strengthening its economy and creating opportunities for investment. Líl̓wat Capital Assets LP and the shareholders of Pemberton Development Corporation have previously partnered on the Baxter Creek and Red Sky Developments in Whistler, BC.

Skénkenam Development Limited Partnership (Skénkenam) has made an application to develop Phases 3, 5 and 7 of the 2007 Benchlands Neighbourhood Concept Plan (NCP). Skénkenam’s interest in the project is to provide a long-term supply of housing options for the community, and economic development (e.g. employment and training) while recognizing and preserving the natural environment, recreational amenities, cultural and archaeological values and small-town character.

In September 2021, the partnership finalized the purchase of 60 hectares. The current development application considers 31 hectares of the 60-hectare land holding. A condition of the sale of the lands is the remediation of two contaminated parcels. A third parcel cannot be considered for development until it is incorporated into the Village of Pemberton boundaries.

This website informs the community of the steps past, present and future of the Nkwúkwma Development Public participation is welcomed in the next phases of the planning process. Documentation of the process is also available.


In the next 20-25 years, Nkwúkwma plans to bring approximately 450 residential units to the land above the Pemberton Valley.

In 2008, the Village of Pemberton adopted the Benchlands NCP which provided a land use framework to accommodate future community housing needs situated out of the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) and the floodplain.

The NCP provided a comprehensive review of the lands (e.g. topography, environment, servicing) while recognizing the needs and aspirations of the Pemberton community. The Benchlands NCP included a new neighbourhood developed in eight phases, primarily comprised of single family lots. In 2013, key policy directions of the NCP were adopted by Council into Pemberton’s Official Community Plan (OCP).

The Nkwúkwma neighbourhood proposes a diverse and integrated residential neighbourhood on the three developable benches. The development will be serviced by a main arterial road that will provide a looping connection through the phased neighbourhood. The land uses have been established by considering community needs for a range of ground oriented and attainable housing, but also respecting the character of the neighbouring single-family neighbourhood. The site layout and road network has also been dictated by the terrain and seeks to minimize the impact of the development. The parks and open spaces frame the neighbourhood, provide recreation amenities, preserve the natural environment, and preserve archeological sites.


The Village has undertaken additional planning studies, as the neighbourhood planning has continued to evolve, since the initial approval of the Benchlands NCP and rezoning in 2007, and the 2010 Official Community Plan.

The following principles reflect new and site-specific directions the Village has endorsed and how they apply to Nkwúkwma. As with the Official Community Plan principles, these principles permeate the approach to neighbourhood planning, policy, and development permit area guidelines in the Sub Area Plan (SAP)

A. The Nkwúkwma neighbourhood supports First Nation Reconciliation

Over recent years, the Village has sought to formalize and recognize the importance of Líl̓wat Nation as a partner government and acknowledge the importance of the Village of Pemberton within the Traditional Territory of Líl̓wat Nation. In 2010, the Village of Pemberton and the Líl̓wat Nation entered into a Protocol Agreement to formalize the government-to-government relationship. Further commencing in 2019, the province negotiated the purchase of the Nkwúkwma by Líl̓wat Nation and their subsidiary companies for development as a reconciliation offering. The Nkwúkwma neighbourhood represents an opportunity to reshape a previously approved neighbourhood with the potential to benefit the Village of Pemberton and Líl̓wat Nation.

B. The Nkwúkwma neighbourhood prioritizes open space.

The Nkwúkwma neighbourhood represents a more compact, walkable development approach than considered in the initial Benchlands approvals. The result is expansive preservation of natural and green spaces which will enable the preservation of habitat and provide a range of passive and active recreation experiences near existing neighbourhoods and the downtown.

C. The Nkwúkwma neighbourhood responds to community housing needs.

The Village of Pemberton has undertaken an initial Housing Needs Assessment as mandated by the province and has prepared initial strategies to promote affordable and attainable housing. The existing Benchlands approvals and rezoning would be predominantly a large-lot, conventional single-detached neighbourhood. The new Nkwúkwma neighbourhood will feature a broader range of housing types and will facilitate innovative forms of housing to appeal to a broader range of residents. This will further the Village’s objective of promoting a broad range of housing types. Affordable housing, either on-site or in a different location will be a pre-requisite for rezoning approval.

D. The Nkwúkwma neighbourhood advances climate action priorities

The Village’s Climate Action strategy seeks to find means to reduce the climate impacts of the community and particularly new development. Located next to the downtown and services, combined with the emphasis on pedestrians and active transportation, Nkwúkwma will further the Village’s efforts through the development of the new neighbourhood.

E. The Nkwúkwma neighbourhood provides safe and resilient housing.

Located outside the floodplain and with development requirements specific to protection from wildfire and geological hazards, the Nkwúkwma neighbourhood provides housing in a safe and resilient manner in a valley which is prone to a range of natural hazards.

F. The Nkwúkwma neighbourhood models responsible hillside development

Hillside development generates a range of considerations regarding the natural terrain, visual appeal, and integration with the natural environment. The Nkwúkwma neighbourhood will serve as a model of hillside development sensitively draping the neighbourhood onto the topographic features of the land to minimize alteration of the land and a preserve the visual appeal of the area. Specific development permit area guidelines and statutory buildings schemes will ensure that development is comprehensively planned and managed.

G. The Nkwúkwma neighbourhood is fiscally responsible and benefits the Village.

The servicing approach to the Nkwúkwma neighbourhood will ensure the development of the land will not create undue financial burdens on the Village over the short and long term. Comprehensive analysis of Village service systems, and a requirement that the development make proportionate contributions to the Village’s servicing infrastructure will ensure a coordinated and fiscally responsible approach to development.

H. Nkwúkwma will benefit the community

The Nkwúkwma neighbourhood will provide direct and tangible benefits to the Village of Pemberton and its residents through community amenity contributions, servicing improvements, affordable housing contributions, and secured tenure over recreational lands.


Public Open House #1 – Presentation of Land Use Analysis – Village of Pemberton
Submission of Development Application (OCP Amendment and Rezoning) – Village of Pemberton
Council Meeting- Application Referral to Internal and External Agencies for Comment Village of Pemberton
Public Open House – Cancelled – Development Plan, Economic Development & Community Comment – Líl̓wat Nation
Public Open House #2 – Development Proposal & Community Comments – Village of Pemberton
Committee of the Whole Staff Presentation of Development Plan to Council – Village of Pemberton
Public Open House and Information Meeting- Lil’wat Nation
Committee of the Whole Staff Presentation of Development Plan to Council – Village of Pemberton
Council Consideration of Initial Bylaw Amendment Readings – Village of Pemberton
Public Hearing – Village of Pemberton
Council Consideration of 3rd Reading of Bylaws – Village of Pemberton
Council Consideration of Bylaw Adoption – Village of Pemberton
Líl̓wat Nation Community Meeting
Village Staff Introduction of Sub Area Plan
Nkwúkwma 3rd Public Information Meeting – Village of Pemberton
Nkwúkwma 4th Public Information Meeting – Village of Pemberton
Initial Bylaw Reading – Village of Pemberton
Public Hearing – Village of Pemberton


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