Residents in West Kelowna are gearing up for a fight to save a series of trails known as the Mount Boucherie trails.
More than 500 residents have signed a petition, asking the City of West Kelowna to protect the Mount trails from the final phases of the Vineyard Estates neighbourhood development, owned by Kelowna-based Victor Projects.
Victor Projects is looking to rezone its development from rural residential large parcel to single detached residential zone, parks and open space and duplex.
Opponents of the development say the proposed plans will severely impact the available trails and surrounding slopes and green space in the only area of its kind in Lakeview Heights.
A public hearing on the matter was held Tuesday night. For an updated story, see www.kelownacapnews.com.
“The developer has allocated park land that is not suitable to build on, and, coincidentally, is not suitable for seniors or young children for walking trails because of the steep topography,” said the group in a submission to the City of West Kelowna.
An online petition was started by a group called the Friends of Mount Boucherie, saying they stand for “preserving the current trails along the Mount Boucherie slope from Eain Lamont Park to East Boundary Road.”
The group says the developer has not set aside enough park land and also has an issue with plans to move a cell tower saying it should be located at the very top of Mount Boucherie due to health concerns as well as cell service.
One resident urged West Kelowna to maintain the trails.
“Stanley Park wouldn’t exist today if it hadn’t been for the War Act declaring it a Military reserve and expropriating it from the hands of developers,” said Lana Thompson. “Imagine that space gone, all those tourists gone, all those birds and animals gone. Once this area is gone it’s gone forever. It’s never coming back, those economic and cultural opportunities will also be lost forever and the species that call the area home will die. Please consider the consequences for sake of a short term real estate deal.”