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Black Mountain Regional Park is getting bigger

Regional District chair Gail Given announces a 127 hectare property expansion for Black Mountain Regional Park, Thursday, Sept. 21, 2017, at the summit of Black Mountain overlooking Kelowna and Okanagan Lake.
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September 22, 2017 - 12:00 PM

KELOWNA - The Regional District has spent $2.3 million to add 127 hectares to Black Mountain Regional Park just east of Kelowna.

The newly purchased land will be added to the existing 516-hectares that currently make up the park, according to a Regional District of the Central Okanagan media release. The parkland, located along Kelowna’s eastern boundary, are geographically, ecologically and culturally significant because they are important grasslands, the Regional District says.

“We’ve now protected more than 640 hectares of significant grassland, open Ponderosa pine and grassland savanna," regional district chair Gail Given says in the media release. "It’s home to at least nine endangered or threatened species and ecological communities.”

Most of the money to buy the land to expand the park came from two regional district parks reserve funds. The Regional District says $200,000 came from the Government of Canada’s Habitat Stewardship program and $15,000 from the Central Okanagan Land Trust.

“This is the 50th anniversary of the regional district. Our regional parks system is something that’s been important for past and current regional boards," Given says. "Today’s announcement further reinforces the vision that began in early 1975 with the purchase of four hectares of land for our first regional park, Kaloya in Lake Country."

Given says the regional district is collaborating with the Westbank First Nation to manage the expanded park.

"It holds great cultural and historical significance for the Okanagan syilx people and that’s something we hope to widely share in the years ahead," she says.

A special Canada 150 plaque was presented during the announcement of the park expansion yesterday, Sept. 21, to recognize the generous land donation of the Adria and Holterhus families in 2014 under the Government of Canada Ecological Gifts Program to help create the regional park, according to the release.

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