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Development battles nature

The developers of the groundbreaking complex set to go up at 2169 Pandosy had started, but Mother Nature has dealt them a painful blow.

The project’s lead designer, Alana Marrington, says the team has been checking the site every few days to see if any work can progress, but complications from Okanagan Lake’s near-record rise this spring continue to stand in their way.

With forms and foundation work ready to go, an excavator is sitting at the site awaiting authorization from the City of Kelowna to be able to put in temporary dewatering pits for construction.

“Right now we can’t dig holes, put services in, continue with formwork, or pour any concrete,” Marrington says.

As of July 5, Okanagan Lake sits 342.949 metres above sea level, and remains substantially higher than full pool.

“Yes, it is going down, just not fast enough,” Marrington says.

This has resulted in a five-to-six month delay getting 2169 Pandosy off the ground, meaning the development permit has now expired. This means the team had to reapply for their development permit.

Marrington stresses that nothing has changed with the project—it will still look exactly the same—but a technicality with the municipality means a new permit was the easiest option moving forward.

“Re-application was our only choice after many months of preparation, but after discussing potential alternatives with the City of Kelowna and our consulting team, we are resigned to the fact that Mother Nature won this round,” she says.

Garry Tomporowski, the principal architect at GTA Architecture Ltd., acknowledges there are a number of sites around Kelowna being affected by the high water tables.

Cody Shantz, a project manager at Sawchuk Developments Ltd. echoes the fact that this is not the only construction site that has been delayed.

Now, the timelines for 2169 Pandosy will have to be evaluated, and trades realigned.

With a sales disclosure statement ready in hand to file, “we had to hold it back and not sell,” say residential realtors Joe Uhearn and Mary Hamman.

Commercial realtors Bill Raine and David Delorme say businesses are calling and ready to commit, but interested parties will have to wait a few more weeks for a chance to purchase.

“We have informed everyone on our registration list, and they are very understanding of the situation, and are willing to wait for the opportunity to purchase in a healthy building,” Marrington says.

With 36 condominiums and 30 commercial and medical ancillary spaces available, demand has been very high.

“While the delay has thrown us a curveball, like many other businesses and developments in the Okanagan, we only hope the summer, fall and winter seasons will be kind to all of us who have to recover from losses and setbacks,” Marrington says.

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