Developers can do better

Kelowna city council took aim at the developer of the McKinley Beach Resort.

The issue was the quality of drawings presented as part of development permit application. for the 30 unit residential development - the second phase in the overall project.

This isn't the first time council has demanded more from developers - in fact, it's been a running theme for at least two other projects over the past few months.

Coun. Mohini Singh, one of three councillors who voted no, led the council charge.

While the staff report suggested landscaping that included trees, shrubs and natural grasses, Singh said she was concerned given the quality of the images.

"Can you paint me a picture...the greenery is very thin. It's very bare. Is this going to be houses stacked one on top of the other, covering the hillside with no green space? It changes the look and feel of the area. The natural beauty of the area is being lost," she said.

"OK is just not good enough. We have so much development in Kelowna, it's time to say we want the best we can get for our city. That's where I'm coming from. The wow factor has to kick in for me."

Coun. Luke Stack called the images elementary and uninspiring.

"For me, it's a crap shoot. OK, I'll support it, I think it's going to look OK, but I really don't have confidence I'm seeing what I'm approving," said Stack.

"There's no imagery of landscaping, there's just a little slop of green."

Coun. Brad Sieben also had issues with the drawings, but not enough to vote it down, while Coun. Gail Given said drawings are drawings.

She said she purchased a lot on Dilworth Mountain before it was completely built out, and says now, "I have way too much of it (landscaping)"

The development passed 6-3 with Coun. Hodge joining Stack and Singh on the no side.

Another portion of the development got unanimous approval.

Council gave the go ahead for the developer to add 70 slips to the 110-slip marina.

The developer asked for the additional slips to compensate for cancellation of a dry dock boat storage facility upland of the marina.

The facility was not feasible from an engineering and construction standpoint as a result of the steep topography.

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