Black Press Media is reaching out to all candidates running for Kelowna council in the 2022 municipal election, asking for their response to three specific issues about the community, as well as a fun question. Responses will be published in the order they are received.
Davis Kyle – Council candidate
If elected, how do you think council should manage growth, development and attainable, affordable housing in Kelowna?
Kelowna needs better urban planning and council must emulate leading mid-size cities around North America and Europe to increase our quality of life. I support preserving our natural areas, preventing suburban traffic growth, and protecting ALR lands by stopping suburban sprawl. I support legalizing walkable, mixed-use, and transit-accessible communities by zoning “missing middle” housing opportunities.
I support 30% urban tree canopy coverage and changing regulations to encourage more multifamily-adjacent greenspaces. I support transit-oriented development on frequent transit routes now, to create a business case for Light Rail in the future. I am committed to investing in the infrastructure to make our roads and intersections more efficient, and to make our suburban streets quieter and safer, and to make sure that all users, including cyclists and pedestrians, have dedicated infrastructure that keeps them safe while going to work or school under a Vision Zero transportation policy.
Finally, I support making bussing viable for the middle class through route changes, increased frequency, and investment in Bus Rapid Transit infrastructure.
In your view, what is the council’s responsibility to help address street and property crime in Kelowna?
Council must continue to fund our RCMP in line with population growth, but that isn’t enough. We should implement Peer Assisted Care Teams, continue to work with the provincial government to end the revolving door for prolific offenders, expand programs like Complex Care treatment spaces, and support Integrated Court. It is important to build in ways that keep eyes on the street, to provide well-lit and safe-feeling public spaces, and to provide the infrastructure, such as indoor bike storage zoning minimums, to reduce crime.
In your view, what is councils’ responsibility in assisting those experiencing homelessness, and providing affordable housing for Kelowna residents?
Council can remove barriers to cross-subsidized affordable housing for non-profit developers; they should be prioritized in our approvals and regulatory framework. We must continue to support land acquisition and approve the housing that BC Housing does build while ensuring that community concerns are mitigated. Enforcing regulations on short-term rentals and vacant units is also important, supply AND demand set prices.
Who is your favourite Okanagan celebrity and why?
Kelsey Serwa – The only Olympic medalist that I’ve ever met, backstage at the BC Sports Awards in 2014 when I opened the ceremonies by singing O’Canada onstage.
Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.