District of West Kelowna council made a splash of progress by adopting an official Waterfront Plan on Tuesday.
The purpose of a waterfront plan is to help guide future decision-making regarding the preservation and development of the district’s waterfront.
The plan will assist the district in prioritizing short, medium and long-term investments to the waterfront and will facilitate budget planning, acquisition strategies, public realm improvements and development directions over the next 20 years.
But not all of the councillors were thrilled with the document.
“I’m not sure where to start, but I will say that this plan has some vision, but it doesn’t have my vision,” said Coun. Carol Zanon.
“It is enhancement, but it’s not economic. Parks are good but they don’t bring in the revenue. It’s another one of these living documents, so I can live with it, but I do feel very disappointed.”
Coun. Gord Milsom said he was satisfied with the plan.
“It’s a long-term, 50-year plan and it gives us some actionable items that we can work on right away. It seems the public are in agreement with our direction,” he said.
The goal of the plan is to develop a vision for the waterfront by identifying opportunities to expand the economic base and public spaces while protecting environmentally sensitive areas with and adjacent to Okanagan Lake.
Mayor Doug Findlater said that he’s happy that this document is moving forward.
“This has been a long haul; this has gone on 15 months. I think we’ve got a bit of a consensus or compromised document here. There are different views, different visions around this table and in the community, but I think it’s time to adopt it,” said Findlater.
“It shows us a path, a way forward. Things can be changed as it goes along. There is a template here to move forward and lots of good ideas.”