The area north of downtown (referred to as the North End) is one of the most dynamic and diverse neighbourhoods in Kelowna, and it is changing rapidly.
Set between Knox Mountain Park to the north and the downtown on the south, the North End neighbourhood contains a range of distinct areas, from wartime and updated residential housing, to long-established industrial and new commercial businesses, to a young and growing Brewery District. With significant development on the horizon for this area, the City has prioritized a neighbourhood planning process for the North End. You can view it here:
What is a Neighbourhood Plan?
Neighbourhood plans guide future development in an area, including the locations of parks and public spaces, development standards, and transportation solutions. Neighbourhood plans also provide a link between the high-level planning found in the Official Community Plan (OCP) and the regulatory detail of a zoning bylaw.
When a neighbourhood plan is complete, it includes:
- an inventory of existing land uses, natural features, zoning, transportation networks, utility infrastructure and heritage sites;
- a statement of development objectives and policies for the area, and their relationship to Council policy as stated in the Official Community Plan, and within other bylaws and policies that may be adopted by Council from time to time;
- where applicable, information on the natural environment or hazardous conditions of the area including the manner in which natural site characteristics will influence development;
- the identification of major land uses by type and density;
- the general location of transportation networks and required upgrades to accommodate vehicles, public transit, pedestrians and cyclists within the plan area, and the relationship of the proposed network to existing City facilities. Advance transportation plans should identify all vehicle, transit, pedestrian, bicycle, and trail linkages and provide a mix of trail, local, collector and arterial roads necessary to create a balanced transportation system; and,
- the location and type of any development permit areas to be designated within the area, together with guidelines for proposed development within those development permit areas.
Why Do We Need the Plan Now?
The North End is a unique, evolving part of town. With significant development expected in the near future, it’s important to plan this area holistically, with a community-led vision for the future of the neighbourhood.
The Tolko lumber mill has closed permanently, and the adjacent BC Tree Fruits site has recently been sold. The development potential of these sites is being explored, which presents a window of opportunity to help set the course for the long-term evolution of this complex, vital and exciting part of our community.
A new neighbourhood plan will provide the opportunity to clarify the community’s aspirations for the neighbourhood, and answer some of the big, outstanding questions, such as: What is the future of industrial in the North End? What is the role of multi-unit residential development? Can industrial uses co-exist with residential and commercial? Is there an opportunity to expand housing options in the area?
A neighbourhood planning process will also provide the opportunity to identify the public spaces, infrastructure networks, and amenities needed to support the evolution of this area. Without a proactive neighbourhood plan in place, planning and development would be inconsistent.
A thorough, well managed and coordinated neighborhood plan process will provide clear guidance to an area that is facing considerable pressure for change.
Neighbourhood Plan Boundaries
The City has determined the area of concern is not all of the area contained within the established KDKM Neighbourhood Assoc. boundaries. Their concerns are focused on the area from Clement Ave, north to the base of Knox Mountain.
The North End Neighbourhood Plan will be developed through sustained involvement of the neighbourhood and broader community and will take approx. 18 months to complete. Completion is tentatively set for end of 2022. The plan will guide redevelopment over the next 20 years and beyond, including the locations of parks and public spaces, development standards, required infrastructure and transportation solutions.
Public engagement will be centered around developing a community-led vision for the future of the North End. It is important for all residents of the North End to be involved to some to degree, to ensure their input and concerns are brought forward to the City. You can subscribe for project updates and to get the latest information on engagement topics and opportunities through Get Involved :
Tolko Mill Site Redevelopment
Over the past two years, Tolko has been engaged in the decommissioning work for the Kelowna Mill Site and, more recently, has joined in preliminary discussions with the City of Kelowna regarding redevelopment of the property and the opportunity to work with the community to create the vision and plan that will guide that process. You can stay connected and up to date with the Mill Site plans by going to the following website and registering for updates:
The Mill Site Planning Team will undertake a community planning process to create the Mill Site Area Redevelopment Plan (ARP). According to Tolko, this process will be integrated with the community’s vision and aspirations for the North End. Read more at Castanet: