325 Power St rezoning proposal to allow accomodations

The public is invited to learn more about the opportunity to add accommodations at 325 Power St., also known as the South Okanagan Event Centre (SOEC) complex, during an open house on Thursday, April 30 from 4 to 7 p.m. in Room 3 of the Penticton Community Centre.

What is happening?

The Economic Development Office has identified attraction of a premier hotel as a priority, determining that the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre (PTCC) has lost several large conventions in the last two years as a result of the current lack of an attached hotel to the complex. Increasing conventions and delegate days would generate significant economic opportunity for Penticton.

Facts about the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre:

  • The PTCC hosted 91 events last year
  • The PTCC generated $12,500,000 over 2 years in economic activity in the community
  • The PTCC is competing with more than 174 like-sized convention centres in North America
  • When booking space, convention organizers consider these types of amenities: hotel rooms, quality & proximity to event, plus food, destination venue and amenities like transit or walkable areas
  • The PTCC lost an estimated $7 million to $21 million in convention business between 2012 and 2014 due to quality of accommodations

Zoning – what it is now and what's proposed

Right now, the site is zoned for public assembly, which allows for many types of uses: indoor and outdoor amusement, office, restaurants, retail stores as well as congregate housing (assisted living group housing) . It doesn't currently allow for tourist or guest accommodation.

Council passed first reading of a zoning amendment that would add “tourist accommodation” to the allowed uses at 325 Power St. (also known as the SOEC complex). Before it is formally passed by Council, public input is being sought on the proposal.

Details can be found here:

Public input

The public can have its say at 2 sessions:

  1. Public open house – Thursday, April 30 from 4 to 7 p.m. at Penticton Community Centre. Here you can learn about current uses on the site, more about the PTCC opportunities and challenges and give feedback on the zoning change.
  2. Public hearing – Monday, May 11 at 6 p.m. at the Cleland Community Theatre, 325 Power St. This is the official public hearing required under the provincial legislation. You can either provide your submission verbally, or by sending an email.

Note: Council will likely deliberate on the zoning matter May 11 once the public hearing concludes.

Have thoughts, questions?

The public is invited to complete a brief online survey about the matter.

For questions, contact Blake Laven, Planning Manager, at 250-490-2528 or by email, or Colleen Pennington, Economic Development Officer at 250-493-3323 or by email, if you have any questions.