Imagine city's next steps

The City of Kelowna is moving into the next phase of its Imagine Kelowna project.

Early last month, council, and the community, was introduced to the project's draft community vision.

That vision, with Imagine Kelowna's draft goals, will now be presented to the community in a series of open houses.

“Once the draft vision, principles and goals are introduced to the community for feedback, the results will be presented to council in February, along with an introduction to Imagine Next, which is the partnership and planning framework that will help implement the vision," said project manager Rafael Villarreal.

The final endorsement of Imagine Kelowna is planned for March."

Imagine Kelowna is a community led exercise to help the city transition from a small city to a mid-size city.

"How can we prepare Kelowna to what it is becoming, which is a global city thanks to the university, to new industries that are occurring.

"How do we respond to that, while keeping some of the things people really value about the city, which is quality of life, the connection with nature, the ability to be able to not have the congestion you get in the urban centres."

The four open houses are scheduled for next week at various venues around the city, including:

  • Jan. 23, 2:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m., Plaza 33, 301 Hwy 33 (Rutland)
  • Jan. 24, 2:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m., Parkinson Recreation Centre (Centre)
  • Jan. 25, 2:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m., Capital News Centre (Mission)
  • Jan. 26, 1 p.m. -2:30 p.m., UBC-Okanagan Campus

Villarreal says Imagine Next will determine how to align all the planning the city does with the community's vision.

"It's not just about city hall," he says, "it's the community, the community vision."

“This is an exciting and complex time as we integrate the values important to the community into council decisions, while finding a balance to serve the needs of all residents,” said Mayor Colin Basran.

“We need to prepare our city to be future ready to the best of our abilities. The best way to do that is to keep the community engaged so it can guide us in shaping the future.”

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