Kelowna council gave initial approval for Kitsch Wines to relocate

Winery gets OK to move

A plan to relocate Kitsch Wines around the corner from its current location passed its first hurdle Monday afternoon when Kelowna council approved the application.

It must still be rubber stamped by the Agricultural Land Commission, then return to the city for development and building permits.

Several hurdles are required because the newly acquired property won't be ready for production for about three years.

Planner Alex Kondor told council ALC regulations state at least two hectares of grapes must be grown on the property and be production-ready for the winery to be considered a farm use.

Much of the property has been transformed from cherry orchard to grapes, however the grapes won't be ready for harvest for a few years.

"The winery would be considered non-farm use until enough grapes are planted and in production to meet ALC applications," said Kondor. "Owners are seeking relief for up to three years until such time as they expect to have enough grapes that would be harvested and in production to be considered farm use."

Kondor says the winery itself will be almost 10,000 square feet, which includes a crush pad, barrel storage and tasting room.

The application also asks a covenant, placed on the property as a condition of a previous ALR exclusion application, be lifted. The covenant covers a treed, sloping area of the property.

"The proposal is to remove the covenant to potentially farm portions of the covenant area, and to mitigate negative impacts on the vineyard that is being proposed created by large trees on the covenant area."

Coun. Luke Stack was skeptical the ALC would allow for the removal of the covenant.

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