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Plan's retail focus draws criticism

A Vernon politician is questioning the need to designate more land for retail activities.

The regional employment lands inventory has been presented to city council but Coun. Brian Quiring says there is too much emphasis on retail instead of industrial.

“I don’t see this as accurate at all,” said Quiring, who believes residents will increasingly turn to the Internet to purchase goods and there will be less demand for retail stores.

The employment lands inventory tracks vacant employment property.

“After an evaluation of the current North Okanagan vacant employment land base, it is apparent that the land supply is very limited,” said Kevin Poole, economic development manager.

“The region has a total vacant employment land supply of about 1,011 acres. Only a few of the serviced lands were larger than five acres. The majority of the lands are smaller than two acres which reduces the attractiveness of the lots for larger industrial/commercial operations.”

City council has directed staff to work with the Regional District of North Okanagan on the employment lands inventory.

 

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