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RDOS gets OK to borrow $900K for Naramata Centre Beach purchase

Listed at one acre in size, with over 320 feet of lakefront property, Centre Beach is currently owned by the Naramata Centre Society. Global News

It appears Centre Beach in Naramata will stay in the public domain.

On Tuesday, the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS) announced that its request to borrow $900,000 to acquire Naramata Centre Beach had passed the alternative approval process.

Listed at one acre in size, with over 320 feet of lakefront property, Centre Beach is currently owned by the Naramata Centre Society.

Read more: Public overwhelmingly rejects borrowing request to buy Sickle Point

The society said it would sell a portion of the beach to the RDOS to keep it as parkland instead of selling it privately to potential land developers.

An online fundraiser has raised just over $1 million to keep the beach public.

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“For over 70 years, the Naramata Centre Beach has been the place to jump off the dock, play in the sand and rest in the shade under the beautiful trees,” the Naramata Slow community group said on its fundraising website.

“We can’t imagine our children riding their bikes by Centre Beach five years from now saying, ‘Do you remember when there was a beach there and we would jump off the dock?’”

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The fundraiser is part of a plan that would see the Naramata Centre Society sell the north portion of the beach to the RDOS, along with three other lots in Naramata, for $1.7-million, explained Karla Kozakevich, the regional district board chair.

The RDOS said it had received fewer than 10 opposition forms, well below the 10 per cent threshold of the area’s population, which would have been 173 naysayers.

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In October, the RDOS said if it does purchase the north part of the beach, an agreement would be put in place so that the public could use the whole beach, including the southern portion that would still be owned by Naramata Centre.

The RDOS said it will discuss the AAP results at its next board meeting, set for Feb. 18.

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With files from Megan Turcato.

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