Kelowna arts and worship mega centre not happening - InfoNews

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Kelowna arts and worship mega centre not happening

Pictured is an artists' rendering of the proposed redevelopment of the former St. Paul's Church property on Lakeshore Road that will not be happening.
Image Credit: Contributed
February 15, 2017 - 4:30 PM

KELOWNA – Plans for a four-storey multi-use arts and worship centre in Kelowna have been scrapped and the property sold.

St. Paul’s United Church were given permission from city council in 2013 to tear down their existing 58-year-old church on the corner of Lakeshore Road and KLO Road – home to roughly 100 members – and build a modern, flex-space building complete with offices, residential units and an Arts and Worship Centre.

“The project wasn’t viable,” church spokesperson Sue Goodwin says. “Ran out of money. Too many delays. We all know development is risky.”

The property was quietly put up for sale in 2015 and sold to the Pinette family, who also own the property adjacent to the lot the church was on.

“We are still in a period of discernment to figure out where to go from here,” Goodwin says. “Our goal is to reinvent ourselves and find a new home.”

Roughly $500,000 raised from the congregation to help fund the project is being held in trust.

“We aren’t tax experts so we went to the experts,” she says. “Our accountant specified that our donations could not be returned. It’s against the law.

“We have all of that money in trust with an investment firm. We’ll be using it towards some capital project in the future.”

She says letters were sent out as soon as they knew the project would not proceed and that a time capsule and cornerstone crews unearthed during demolition are being kept in storage.

This property was sold in 2015 after plans for a multi-storey arts and worship centre fell through.
This property was sold in 2015 after plans for a multi-storey arts and worship centre fell through.

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