Short Term Gains

To the editor:

If the city allows the proposed development of the Boppart property (just north of the Paul’s Tomb area of Knox Mountain Park) to proceed they are passing up a great opportunity in favor of short term gains.

I moved to Kelowna five years ago from development choked southern Ontario. As a mountain biker and all around outdoors person I watched in disbelief as the few remaining natural areas near my small city disappeared. There literally became nowhere to go near or in the town to wind down, walk, bike or even show kids what a natural environment looked like.

Knox Mountain was the very first place I went mountain biking in Kelowna. What a shock it was that I could ride such a great trail network right in town, no two hour drive first. I had found a town that seemed to value it’s park land and support its active, healthy citizens. On most of my rides around Knox and the highlands area since I’ve ridden through a near perfect, flowing section of single-track from Paul’s Tomb up to Cliffton Road, the Boppart property. I had never imagined it wasn’t part of the park, it just seemed natural. This trail quickly became my favorite piece of single-track on the mountain.

As our city grows, and particularly our downtown core, our representatives must realize that growing this gem that is Knox Mountain Park offers many benefits to our City’s future. The demands on the park are steadily increasing with our population growth. We now need more park space, and in particular, protected lake front for everyone to enjoy into the future. It appears this may be a now or never decision. If the Boppart property development is allowed this may set the tone for future developments in the area putting even further strain on our limited wild spaces.

I believe a decision to protect this land and expand Knox Mountain Park will make a clear, strong statement to other municipalities, new citizens and our tourists that Kelowna has the foresight and wisdom to see the value in providing it’s citizens with beautiful, protected park land and lake front. Lets all make sure that our success and growth are well thought out and include wild spaces and park land, one of the things that makes Kelowna the envy of the whole country.

If you believe the Boppart property should be added to Knox Mountain Park you can help by attending the APC hearing taking place October 26 at 7:00pm at city hall. Contact Dr. Bill Bowering at 763-9121 with any questions.

Mike D Kittmer
Kelowna Mountain Bike Club

Story# 5875 / 

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