The Tsuu T’ina Nation has received approval from the federal government to hand over the land the province needs to finish the southwest portion of the ring road.

The nation says it has been notified that Orders in Council were passed to authorize a change in boundaries to accommodate the land transfer.

The land deal was reached in November of 2013 and will see over 2100 hectares added to Tsuu T’ina lands and about 428 hectares will be given over to the province.

When it is completed, the southwest section will be 16 kilometres long and include 37 bridges, one rail underpass and 13 interchanges.

The OIC also authorized the transfer of funds that was negotiated to secure the property.

The southwest segment will extend from east of 69 Street SW on Glenmore Trail/Highway 8 south to Macleod Trail/Highway 2A.

Chief Roy Whitney says the legislation is an important next step for the future of the Tsuu T’ina Nation and a major milestone for the final completion of the roadway.

“This is an important day for Tsuu T’ina, one that helps us see the benefit of the work that has been done to date, and the trust that Tsuu T’ina people have had in a democratic process that has worked.  The ring road project is really about future benefits to Tsuu T’ina.  The road will stimulate economic development on a major scale - the kind of economic development that is critical to ensuring that our children, grandchildren and future generations have the potential to build successful and prosperous lives here, at Tsuu T’ina.   Council has also been drafting solid plans to ensure that funds received and future revenue generated are used to create a legacy for those future generations.  We look forward to presenting those plans to Tsuu T’ina people first at upcoming internal meetings,” said Chief Whitney in a statement on Friday.

There is no word yet on when construction on the project will begin or when it will be completed.