Still no realistic chance of a second route out of West Kelowna's Casa Loma neighbourhood | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Still no realistic chance of a second route out of West Kelowna's Casa Loma neighbourhood

November 30, 2018 - 7:30 AM

KELOWNA - Two proposed West Kelowna developments could create some park amenities but won’t open up a second access to the Casa Loma area.

One project has been on the books for about five years. If approved, it will extend Benedick Road to connect to Casa Palmero Drive but will not reach to Lakebridge Road for a long-rumoured second exit. Right now, the lakefront subdivision can only be accessed via Campbell Road near the Bennett bridge.

“Has every effort been made to look at a connection to Lakeridge Road or is that just not a possibility at all?” Coun. Stephen Johnston asked West Kelowna Planning Manager Brent Magnan at a council meeting earlier this week.

“There’s a very challenging topographical constraint,” Magnan answered. “The reason we have this large narrow band of park (Kalamoir) and open space is because we have this steep section of the land base so it’s really challenging to get anything up there.”

“Has the city ever looked at it specifically?” Magnan continued. “No. Anecdotally, out on site, I think it’s pretty easy to look at it and say it’s very difficult if not impossible but we’ve never done any designs and the applicant certainly hasn’t moved forward with that at this point.

There is a historic slide area that has hindered development over the years and triggered more than a dozen geotechnical studies. Current plans, if approved, will allow for one house on top of the slide area that’s deemed safe by geotechnical engineers.

But West Kelowna planner Nancy Henderson told that any road access up to Lakebridge would have to go through that slide area and other properties that do not currently have any development applications with the city.

If approved, that project will provide a dozen off-street parking spots for people wanting to use Kalamoir Park.

The developer also proposes putting sewer and water services through the existing Benedick Road but there is not enough room to provide curbs, gutters, sidewalks and bike paths for people travelling to and from the park.

Magnan said the city tries to have at least two accesses to subdivisions with more than 100 units and three accesses if there are more than 600 units. Henderson said there are currently 214 units in Casa Loma with only Campbell Road as an exit.

Staff gave council an update on the rezoning application during the meeting since it’s been in the works for so long. It will go to a public hearing at the Lions Hall in Westbank on Dec. 11.

The second rezoning application is more routine as it’s for the completion of the fourth and final phase of the Casa Palmero development with nine single family lots and a multi-family component that could have about the same number of units. That public hearing will be held at a later date.

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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