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RV park on ag land gets reluctant Kelowna council nod

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September 19, 2017 - 2:30 PM

KELOWNA - After vowing last year to shut the gate on new RV parks on agricultural land, the city has given reluctant approval to another.

Council agreed to let the Gill family install a 9-pad RV park on the McKenzie Road property on the Rutland bench under a special agricultural tourism zoning introduced in 2014.

Only two property-owners ever applied for it before council — facing unexpected opposition and fearing an onslaught of RV park requests — decided last year it would no longer support the zoning.

Rural planning manager Todd Cashin said the Gills had originally submitted a detailed plan, but went ahead and did much of the work without approval and contrary to the original design.

“It was another case of going ahead and begging forgiveness later. To be honest, we were holding our noses on this one,” Cashin said. “The property was already zoned, they had already built the house and the soil was heavily disturbed.”

Cashin holds in contrast the only other RV park approved under the now-defunct zoning, the Lintell family who in applied to put 10 RV pads on their 14 acre Benvoulin Road farm.

Their plans for an agri-tourism operation thrust them into the centre of the controversy over the use of land in the agricultural land reserve.

“They’ve done really well,” Cashin said. “I know they’ve had a spotlight on them and a few councillors have been keeping track, ensuring they do what they said they were going to do. I know they’ve got a great vegetable garden growing, working with a fellow from down the street.”

Cashin said he had a productive conversation with the Gill family after Monday’s council meeting.

“It was similar to the Lintell’s. I said here’s your chance to to prove yourself, don’t drop the ball, here’s what you committed to in front of council,” Cashin said.


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