A total of 203 piles for the East tower at One Water Street in Kelowna were inserted into the ground. The developer has donated money representing the 29,435 feet of pile used at help fund JoeAnna’s House at Kelowna General Hospital. —Image: Alistair Waters/Capital News

Developer helps fund home-away-from-home project at Kelowna General Hospital

The builders of the twin-tower One Water Street present $29,435 to the JoeAnna’s House project

The builders of a new twin-tower residential development in Kelowna have given “piles” of money to the Kelowna General Hospital Foundation to help build JoeAnna’s House.

JoeAnna’s House will be a 20-room home-away-from-home for out-of-town families who have a loved one undergoing treatment at KGH and can’t afford a lengthy hotel stay.

On Tuesday, representatives of North American Development Group and Kerkhoff Construction, the developers of One Water Street, presented the head of the Kelowna General Hospital Foundation with a cheque for $29,435 for the project. The foundation is building JoeAnna’s House and will operate and manage it.

The money represents the total length of all the 203 pilings driven into the ground for the first of the two residential towers. The East Tower, as it is known, will be 36 storey’s in height. A second tower—29 storeys tall— will be built beside it.

“The piling (work) is complete with the last of the East Tower’s 203 piles inserted on the first May,” said Leonard Kerkoff, vice-president of Kerkoff Construction. “We’ve added it all up and, with each pile measuring 145 feet in length, that’s 29,435 feet. Laid end to end, they would stretch 5 1/2 miles.”

Kerkoff said no decision has been made about making a similar donation based on the piles to be inserted for the second tower. But, he added, such a move could be considered.

Doug Rankmore, CEO of the KGH Foundation said the donation is important because it helps move the JoeAnna’s house project closer to reality.

The facility will cost an estimated $8 million, with $5 million already raised. It will have 20 family bedrooms, as well as a communal kitchen, dining room and recreation facilities.

Rankmore said at any given time, a quarter of those being treated at KGH are from out of town.

Currently, family members of those receiving treatment at KGH have to stay either with fiends or relatives or pay for a hotel.

Tuesday’s donation came on the same day plans for JoeAnna’s house were submitted by the KGH Foundation to the city for approval.

Rankmore said he would like to see construction start as early as this fall.

Meanwhile, with the East Tower at One Water Street now just about sold out and plans to build the second tower being fast-tracked, the developers announced they will start selling units in the West Tower May 26 at 1 p.m.

Henry Bereznicki, managing partner of North American Development Group said demand for units in the second tower appear to be just as strong as they were for units in the east tower.

A recent open house to provide information about the project attracted 400 people, four time what the developers had expected.

Bereznicki said one the units in the West Tower will sell for $500,000 or less.

He said a strong part of the appeal of the project will be the outdoor recreation amenities to be included on the roof of the four-storey podium structure that the towers will sit on. To be called The Bench, it will include two swimming pools, a grassed and treed areas, as well as barbecue its and other amenities.

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