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Addition to Conservatory could finally complete ill-starred Kelowna development

Artist's rendering of the Conservatory addition.
Image Credit: City of Kelowna
June 26, 2016 - 11:33 AM

KELOWNA - The Conservatory project on Glenmore Road could soon get a make-over of sorts with plans for a multi-family residential development to be built alongside it.

Applicant Sunshine Ventures is seeking a form and character development permit to construct a four-floor 87-unit rental building designed to tie in with the existing building.

The Conservatory project began life 20 years ago with plans for twin towers containing some 1,200 strata units with commercial space and a two-acre indoor tropical garden housed in a glass-walled atrium.

However, the original development immediately ran into financial difficulties, leaving the project half-finished for the better part of a decade, until new ownership took over and converted it into rental apartments.

But despite their best efforts, city planner Ryan Roycroft in a report to council, notes the building still looks unfinished.

Hopes are the new building will help remedy that, but as Roycroft notes, the Conservatory “has a somewhat eclectic style with design decisions the applicant does not feel would translate well to the new building.”

Planning staff are recommending design guidelines for the new addition be relaxed somewhat.

“The overall impression… will be of one singular building that incorporates multiple forms of roofline, windows and materials. While this is not traditional design practice, staff fell that it is appropriate in this instance, owing to the eclectic design of the original building,” Roycroft writes.

Council will consider the Conservatory proposal at its regular public meeting, 1:30 p.m., Monday, June 27 at Kelowna City Hall.

The Conservatory as it stands today.
The Conservatory as it stands today.

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