South Okanagan Regional Aquatic Centre getting closer to reality

Aqua centre inches forward

A proposed South Okanagan Regional Aquatic Center is getting closer to reality, with the towns of Osoyoos and Oliver and the Osoyoos Indian Band taking next steps to form a joint committee aimed at studying the feasibility of such a facility.

They have appointed members of their respective councils as well as staff, and the Town of Oliver is recruiting a member of the public. Sierra Management and Planning has been awarded the contract for a feasibility study.

As the process proceeds it will include opportunities for public engagement after baseline data and information has been compiled, according to a news release from the Town of Osoyoos.

Osoyoos Couns. Jim King and Myers Bennett are on the committee, along with Gerald Davis, director of Community Services and Barry Romanko, former CAO, as the member at large.

The OIB appointed Couns. Sammy Louie and Sonya Jensen, and COO Mike Campol.

"This is an important opportunity. Should the outcome of this study chart a path forward, this level of collaboration could become a model for rural communities throughout the province. What better way to show that when local leaders come together, the residents of multiple communities will reap the benefits," Campol said.

Oliver Couns. Petra Veintimilla and David Mattes, along with CAO and recreation manager Carol Sheridan are also on the committee.

"Oliver recognizes the value of joint service delivery and the direct benefit for residents in each of our respective communities," the town said in a statement.

"The culture of collaboration enables us to work together to build on projects such as the aquatic centre which would be unattainable for one government independently."

Next steps will be a series of meetings with the consultants and the committee, and a final report is in the works to be completed by the end of October.

"This is an exciting opportunity for the region and we are anticipating a strong response from all communities," said director of community services for Osoyoos Gerald Davis.

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