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City of Kelowna embarks on new neighbourhood plan for north end

Click to play video: 'City of Kelowna embarks on new neighbourhood plan for north end'
City of Kelowna embarks on new neighbourhood plan for north end
City of Kelowna embarks on new neighbourhood plan for north end – Jul 19, 2021

Kelowna’s North End is defined as the neighbourhood from Clement Avenue to Knox Mountain Park and from Gordon Drive to Okanagan Lake.

It’s an area that’s a unique mix of residential, commercial and light industry.

The North End has seen unprecedented development over the last two years and is primed for more.

“Given the tremendous growth we are seeing in our community both council and staff thought this was the highest priority in terms of planning initiatives,” Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran told Global News.

That’s why city council has instructed staff to embark upon designing a new neighbourhood plan for the North End.

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“This has the opportunity to be the quintessential neighbourhood for Kelowna in terms of when people come to visit here and it’s really going to put a stamp on our city,” Basran added.

The jewel in the crown of North End redevelopment will be the 40-acre Tolko Mill site, which has been undergoing decommissioning for the last two years.

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“When the mill site announced that they were looking at its redevelopment, we knew that we had to launch a new neighbourhood plan,” said James Moore, the City of Kelowna’s long-range planner, “to make sure the community has a voice to lead the develop of this neighbourhood over the next 20 or more years.”

Click to play video: 'Future of former mill site in Kelowna’s north end still up in the air'
Future of former mill site in Kelowna’s north end still up in the air

 

And the company that will manage the planning and redevelopment process for the former Tolko site says their plan will be informed by and the community’s vision and aspirations for the North End.

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“We think this is a really unique opportunity for Kelowna,” said Holar Developments Dan Walsh.

“We are all enthusiastic about working with the community to determine what the redevelopment options can be.” Walsh said.

Holar Developments Ltd. is wholly owned by Timber Investments, the same company that owns Tolko.

Click to play video: 'Indefinite shutdown at Kelowna lumber mill to become permanent: Tolko Industries'
Indefinite shutdown at Kelowna lumber mill to become permanent: Tolko Industries

 

“This could be a legacy for our community in terms of waterfront access, parks, amenities as well as residential and commercial development,” Basran said.

Kelowna’s mayor thinks the future of the former Tolko site could redefine the city.

“Because we know that this could be something amazing and we feel like we need to engage the public to create something truly visionary,” Basran added.

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According to city staff, the process should take about a year and a half with background research getting underway this fall and community engagement to follow

“Then we will move into finalizing the plan with the community and council and that should set us up for the next 20 or more years,” Moore explained.

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