Support Lawson Landing

To the editor:

To Whom it may Concern,

On December 9th I attended an information sharing meeting on the proposed "Lawson's Landing" downtown development. I arrived with a neutral but open frame of mind and was pleasantly surprised with what I learned. If I understood correctly, Lawson's landing contains many elements of a participatory, people friendly waterfront environment. Yes it will profoundly change the core of our fair city, but isn't that something sorrowfully needed? I especially like Mr. Milroy’s vision of combining a "Granville Island" or farmers market style food fare centre, with a bustling retail component, set back from a people’s plaza, and pier.

My understanding is that any square footage possibly lost to the infrastructure of this core, will be replaced by extending the waterfront forward to include a continuation of the boardwalk which starts north of the Grand Hotel with an 'environmentally friendly' designed new beach on the lakeside of the boardwalk. Does this really infringe on the spirit of the Simpson Park covenant? It still looks like a waterfront "for the people" to me.

If there is a "fly in the ointment." It is the height of four high rise buildings consisting of residential and hotel. An understandable concern for the citizens of Kelowna. I can also see the relationship between requested density, profit to pay for public improvements, while at the same time, helping create enough core population to attract quality retailers and restaurateurs.

Lawson's landing will attract the right people. The people we want to see in our downtown area. Undesirable elements will move on from a well-lit, well-populated cultural district, to do what they do, in less of a spotlight.
In closing I found the developer quite open and inviting to input and critique. So let’s get involved. I understand it is only human to resist change, and we are looking at a lot of change through this proposal. But change is coming whether we like it or not. Our population is projected to hit 300,000. We're not in Kansas anymore Dorothy! Downtown needs revitalization, and Lawson’s Landing is a great option.

Cliff Wettlaufer
Kelowna BC

Story# 5822 / 

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