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Okanagan Gondola project climbs forward

Project passes third reading; conditions still need to be met for adoption
The Okanagan Gondola is one step closer to being built after zoning and land use changes passed its third reading at the Regional District of North Okanagan board meeting Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2023. (Ridge North America photo)

An Okanagan Gondola is one step closer to becoming a reality.

The multi-million dollar project would see a gondola built 1,600 feet above Kalamalka Lake from a site near Bailey Road, across from the Okanagan Rail Trail. The project would feature zip lines, restaurants, retail outlets, an outdoor light show area, wedding and event venues, tree forts, a playground, a plaza, an amphitheatre, trails and more.

The Regional District of North Okanagan (RDNO) board of directors passed third reading of the zoning and land use changes required to build the project at its last meeting Wednesday, Oct. 18.

The developers, Ridge North America, now need to satisfy a list of conditions presented by the RDNO in order for the land and zoning changes to be adopted.

The developers must secure a five-metre wide corridor on the property for a future public trail and obtain an environmental permit.

The developers won’t be able to subdivide the land until access to the property is provided by a public road other than Highway 97. Outdoor entertainment is also limited to outdoor light show areas, plazas, amphitheatres, amusement and recreation facilities, mountain coasters, tree forts and more.

At its meeting Wendesday, the RDNO board amended the outdoor light show condition to make it subject to lower light intensity.

A public hearing was recently held at the RDNO headquarters. There, Ridge North America says strong support was expressed for the project, however traffic concerns were again raised concerning the intersection of Bailey Road and Highway 97. Residents in the area have called for improvements to that interaection whether or not the Okanagan Gondola project is built.

READ MORE: Strong support for Okanagan Gondola project, but traffic concerns persist

READ MORE: Nearby residents have their say on proposed Okanagan Gondola project

Brendan Shykora

About the Author: Brendan Shykora

I started at the Morning Star as a carrier at the age of 8. In 2019 graduated from the Master of Journalism program at Carleton University.
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