Carr’s Landing resident Cara Reed looks at property sale survey markings evident along the shoreline of Gable Beach. Image Credit: Barry Gerding/Black Press

Lake Country Newsmaker of the year: Outcry for public beach leads to new councillor’s election

Cara Reed now represents Carr’s Landing

What started as a public outcry to retain public beach access ultimately led to the election of a new Carr’s Landing councillor this year in Lake Country.

Cara Reed, along with other members in the Carr’s Landing neighbourhood, formed the Friends of Gable Beach association, and they put the pressure on council to retain land that was proposed for sale near Gable Beach Road end.

Reed, who was sworn in along with her fellow councillors in November, said she originally didn’t intend to run for council, but the Carr’s Landing community continued to ask her.

READ MORE: Lake Country public beach advocate turns sights to district council

She said the Gable Beach issue was like her resume which gave her visibility in the community.

“(It) was like a really long, intense, job interview,” she said.

Reed was at the forefront of the issue, advocating with other Carr’s Landing residents to keep parts of land near Gable Beach Road end within the district when council tried to sell it in order to pay off Kelowna’s investment in Lake Country rail trail lands.

The need to raise $2.6 million to reduce Kelowna’s interest in Lake Country’s portion of the rail trail drove the potential sale of Gable Beach.

The district purchased the rail trail lands through its borders at a cost of $5.2 million, a contentious purchase that went to the public twice in 2015.

First, an Alternate Approval Process failed before the district went to a full referendum, which passed in April of 2015.

Lake Country was able to borrow $2.6 million and Kelowna jumped in with the other $2.6, with the understanding the money would be paid back within three years or interest would start to accrue.

Enter Gable Beach and the potential sale of the land to three home-owners in the area this year.

When Lake Country purchased the rail trail, a proposal was created to sell excess lands on the old CN right-of-way, to make up the $2.6 million.

There was also scepticism from those opposed.

The entire rail trail was purchased from CN Rail for $22 million between Kelowna, Lake Country, Coldstream, the North Okanagan Regional District and the Okanagan Indian Band, who joined the inter-jurisdiction team after first attempting to block the sale, saying CN Rail had an agreement to return OKIB its traditional land.

Reed earned 183 votes to former Coun. Jeanette Lambert’s 65 and will continue to advocate for public waterfront access going forward as a councillor, she said.

Public waterfront access remains an ongoing issue in the Central Okanagan, especially in Kelowna.

Protestors for the last two years have walked the foreshore to show that some lakefront property owners have not been following the law, restricting public access for the foreshore.

READ MORE: Meet Lake Country’s new council

Kelowna’s protests and issues were seen as an incentive for Lake Country residents to keep as much of the foreshore accessible to the community as possible.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Video: Monster Truck Chaos takes over Prospera Place in Kelowna

Performing at the shows were Rockstar, Identity Theft, California Kid, Spitfire and Skeletor

Unplug and Play Literacy Week returns in late January

The event sponsored by Interior Savings encourages everyone young and old to unplug from screentime

Kelowna’s Tess Critchlow gears up for World Cup at Big White

Critchlow is a professional snowboarder competing for Team Canada in the boardercross competition

Rockets stunned in 7-0 loss to Portland

Portland’s goaltender Dante Gianuzzi was named the game’s first star with a 17-save shutout

After cashing in on QB gambles, Chiefs and 49ers to clash in Super Bowl

KC beats Tennessee, San Francisco dispatches Green Bay to reach NFL title game

How to beat Blue Monday, the most depressing day of the year

Multiple factors can play a role in seasonal depression, says Fraser Health psychiatrist

B.C. VIEWS: Few clouds on Horgan’s horizon

Horgan’s biggest challenge in the remainder of his term will be to keep the economy humming along

Victoria family focuses on ‘letting go, enjoying time together’ after dad gets dementia

Walter Strauss has developed an interest in music and now takes line dancing classes

B.C. forest industry grasps for hope amid seven-month strike, shutdowns, changes

Some experts say this could be worse for forestry than the 2008 financial crisis

Northern B.C. RCMP investigating alleged sexual assault in downtown Smithers

One person was transported by ambulance to hospital following RCMP investigation at Sedaz

UBC, Iranian-Canadian community create memorial scholarship in honour of victims

The Jan. 8 crash killed 176 people, including 57 Canadians

Disrespectful that Horgan won’t meet during northern B.C. tour: hereditary chief

Na’moks said he was frustrated Horgan didn’t meet with the chiefs

Most Read