The first point of entry for travellers approaching Penticton from the north is set to receive closer attention following Council’s endorsement of the North Gateway Redevelopment and Investment Strategy (NGRIS) during their recent regular meeting, held February 16, 2021.
Located in the north-west corner of the City bordered by Riverside Drive to the west, Highway 97 and the Penticton Golf and Country Club to the south, Power Street and Vees Drive to the east and Churchill Avenue and Lakeshore Drive to the north, the North Gateway area is home to many community assets including, the South Okanagan Event Centre, the Penticton Trade & Convention Centre, the Community / Aquatic Centre, the Okanagan Hockey School, the Cleland Theatre and the Gateway Casino, as well as many current and planned commercial, residential and business developments.
“To ensure an orderly, strategic and investment ready environment within this area of the City, the North Gateway Redevelopment and Investment Strategy is required to ensure a coordinated approach can be taken to land use, infrastructure needs and economic investment opportunities,” said Penticton’s General Manager of Community Services, Anthony Haddad. “Many positive decisions have been made over recent years within this area that have and will continue contributing to the economic success of our community. Taking a closer look at this area will now focus attention on strategic opportunities, setting the area up for a successful future.”
Central to the NGRIS is the initiation of a planning process that enables thoughtful discussion with the community and landowners around the types of land use most appropriate, the density of residential development and tourist accommodations needed, and the balance of housing, commercial and tourist accommodations to support growth within the area as a whole. Key interest would include:
• the capacity of existing and planned infrastructure to service future development;
• the form and character of the area, building height and streetscape design;
• improving signage and access into and through the area;
• intersection design options;
• transportation corridors;
• and attracting new investment.
“Council was pleased to see this initiative come forward. When people reflect on their first impression of places they’ve visited, the blending of natural amenities like lakes and rivers in conjunction with development, cultural amenities and an overall atmosphere of progress and opportunity makes for a striking and memorable welcome,” said Penticton Mayor, John Vassilaki. “While the lands contained within the North Gateway have been attracting interest for years, the creation and introduction of a new strategy will provide an updated sense of direction around what’s possible and what’s wanted in this section of the City.”