OCP adoption punted

After 2.5 years of work and public consultation, it will be at least another two weeks before the City of Penticton adopts its new official community plan. 

Council voted Tuesday to punt the adoption of the wide-reaching document to the August 6 meeting so it can review feedback received during a public hearing Monday night at the Trade and Convention Centre. 

More than 100 residents attended the meeting to offer feedback on the plan, which will guide the development of the community for the next 30 years. 

Mayor John Vassilaki said he noted 17 issues raised by citizens he would like to gather more information on prior to adopting the plan. Because council has already granted the new OCP first reading, any significant changes to it would trigger the need for another public hearing. 

The new plan will see the city focus on encouraging low- and mid-rise infill development in existing urban areas rather than hillside construction. Penticton is expected to grow just 0.6 per cent a year and have a population of 42,000 by 2045 — 4,450 homes will need to be built in that time.

Proposed heritage designations for the city’s historic “K” streets have not been included due to a lack of support from the neighbourhood.

Also notable, the city has ignored an RDOS recommendation to place a 500 metres no-development buffer zone around the Campbell Mountain landfill, instead going with a 300 metre zone with the assumption that any issues around smell and dust can be resolved with a technical solution. 

Councillors Campbell Watt, Katie Robinson and Julius Bloomfield opposed motion to postpone the adoption of the OCP, stating the plan could easily be amended and tweaked after it’s been adopted. 

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