Concerns for new school

Kelowna city council said yes to the design of a new middle school in the Upper Mission - but not without some reservations.

Council was asked to approve the "form and character" of the new Canyon Falls school, set to open in time for the 2019 school year.

While council gave its approval, there were concerns over traffic stacking, parking and any additions that may be needed in the future.

Coun. Luke Stack was particularly concerned about the stacking around the school during drop off and pick up times.

With a clean slate, Stack asked it the district has looked at the issue of how many cars can be stacked up along areas such as Frost Road.

School district planning manager David Widdis told council they are constrained by space at the school site and have not, as yet, worked out the stacking component.

"We don't know how many are going to be going to that site in terms of vehicles," said Widdis.

"We anticipate about four or five buses are going to be going to that site, so hopefully that will take up a majority of the vehicles off."

We said that will be re-evaluated once the school is open and they have a better idea how many vehicles are coming to the school on a daily basis.

In terms of parking at the school, Widdis told council parking requirements are based on classrooms and not the number of teacher at a particular school. In looking at other middle school of a comparable size, he says they have added more stalls than those.

As far as any possible additions due to growth, Widdis said the site is small, and was originally designed to house 600 students.

But, with growth, that number has been increased to 750.

"If we need portables, we would probably have to reconfigure and make some changes within existing facilities within the district."

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