Kelowna Mountain preparing to rise from the ashes | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Kelowna Mountain preparing to rise from the ashes


KELOWNA - With all the creditors for the troubled Kelowna Mountain development reaching agreements to sell their interests to a Vancouver developer, the wine and golf destination may start showing signs of life again.

“Things could be happening there very soon, I think,” lawyer Reinhard Burke told yesterday, Feb. 27. “It’s not for me to sort of disclose.”

While many legal arms and issues may still need to be sorted, it appears Mark Consiglio will remain the operating mind behind the project, backed by a new lender who has bought out previous mortgages and debts.

Some creditors have been paid outright while others will be paid over the next year or so.

“There is a deal in place whereby they are going to sell at a certain price and get paid over a certain period of time,” he said. “So, as long as the agreement hasn’t been carried out yet, people are kind of reluctant to say where they’re at. It’s not just getting a deal done or an agreement made, but to getting paid or getting most of their money back or whatever.”

The Kelowna Mountain saga began more than a decade ago when Mark Consiglio bought three parcels of land totalling 640 acres just south of the City of Kelowna boundary off Gillard Creek Forest Service Road. He floated and pursued various visions for the project including a ski hill and large residential development but all of them stalled before regulatory bodies like the Central Okanagan Regional District. Most recently, it’s been stalled in various legal proceedings. 

A Supreme Court of B.C. ruling last month might have cleared a logjam for sale of the properties by removing some risk. A judge was required to bring certainty to easements and roads that emcumbered and crossed the three properties.

“Astonishingly, construction of the project amenities occurred without apparent regard for the need to obtain building permits or for the boundaries of the Lots,” Judge Gordon Weatherill wrote. “The suspension bridges are anchored on one lot and span another. The Welcome Center and Amphitheatre encroach over lot boundaries, built partially on Lots A and C.”

But Burke, who is Consiglio’s lawyer, said that is no longer relevant as mortgages for all three properties have been bought, or are in the process of being bought up by Dennis Drummond of 104 Investments Ltd.

Previous investors have been tight-lipped about current events but given the history of lawsuits and foreclosures, that’s understandable.

Consiglio has a number of companies he operates under but is still the owner of Kelowna Mountain, just with Drummond as the new creditor, Burke said.

Any further development on the property – which already has a welcome centre, a road and suspension bridges — will need approval from the Regional District of the Central Okanagan, Burke said.

“Kelowna Mountain still has a lawsuit going against the regional district, so that may make negotiating a rezoning or whatever be a bit more complicated,” Burke said. “I filed it several years ago. Kelowna Mountain had to put up security for costs before they could proceed and, as recently as last month, they produced an updated list of documents so it’s at the discovery stage.”

To contact a reporter for this story, email Rob Munro or call 250-808-0143 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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