The Okanagan Military Tattoo has made use of Kal Tire Place (KTP) for the past two years for very successful tattoo events and have made late July reservations for the next five years.
As a user of KTP, we would have appreciated some contact from the planners involved with the proposal for twinning Kal Tire Place.
We now have many questions that we have not been able to get answers for:
1. Our show, and others of a similar size, need to load-in and load-out sets, lights and sound equipment and this means having the room to maneuver semi-trailers and other large vehicles to the doors at the north end of KTP.
2. The north-end outside area of KTP is the staging area for the Okanagan Military Tattoo. It is where tent shelters and tables are set up to look after mustering and feeding the 500 performers and the 150 volunteers. The drawings that have been available look to have the new arena right up against the north end of KTP leaving no room for trucks, trailers or any amount of human traffic.
3. As the area at the north end of KTP used for the back stage performers and volunteers will be minimal with the new arena in place, will we now have to rent both facilities resulting in increasing what is already hefty rental charges?
4. Parking is a real issue with not enough parking spaces for the attendance we now have. With the new arena taking up a huge percentage of an already squeezed parking lot, a bad situation is surely going to get worse. Do the code requirements from the City of Vernon not require one parking space per five attendees? KTP can hold 3,001 seated and 400 standing. With the new facility adding another 400 seats, that makes for 3,800 attendees requiring 760 parking spots. Unfortunately, attendees rarely pile five per vehicle so for plain calculating, think three per vehicle and the need now is more than 1,000 parking spaces.
5. Two events on at the same time, one in each building will be an impossibility.
6. It would appear that the planning going into twinning KTP is to provide specific users with an ice surface or playing surface (ringette, lacrosse). The multiplex, when it was planned and sold to the taxpayers, was supposed to attract multi users and offset the operations costs as well as pay back the initial investment. It appears that has not happened, is not happening and a new facility on the same grounds will further hamper efforts to attract “other users”.
7. If Smithers can build a new 350 seat, stand-alone arena for $4.7 million, why are we spending $13.25 million for what looks like the same facility?
As stated, questions but not many answers. The process to convince taxpayers to fund this project seems to be unduly hurried and what should be concrete plans are more of a concept.
Norm Crerar, producer
Okanagan Military Tattoo