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Cedar Ave. task force a hot ticket

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And the five chosen voices are . . .
A lottery will be held this week to determine which members of the public get to sit on a task force examining the fate of city-owned waterfront properties.
Ten times as many people have applied to join the group as there is space for, city officials say.
"We'll have some kind of transparent process, a random draw of the names, that's the only fair way," Graham Hood, the city's strategic land development manager, said Tuesday.
About 30 people are expected to make up the so-called charrette, or planning group, being assembled to discuss the future of seven waterfront lots north of Cedar Avenue.
About 25 of those spots are reserved for the representatives of groups that have been specifically invited to participate in the planning process.
That list of invitees includes the KLO-Central Neighborhood Association, the Urban Development Institute, a group representing South Pandosy merchants, Okanagan College, and an association of paddleboard enthusiasts who now have use of one of the seven city-owned properties.
Five spots on the charrette have been set aside for any interested members of the public. But more than 50 people have so far applied, hence the need for a lottery to determine which of them will be invited to join the planning process.
Those chosen to participate in the charrette will gather Feb. 25 and 26 to discuss various options for the properties and make recommendations to council.
The fate of the properties is a contentious issue. In 2011, a large number of people objected to the city's plan to sell part of the land for residential and commercial development while also building a new boardwalk along the waterfront.
Critics of the city plan wanted the entire site, on which several homes now sit, turned into parkland. The council of the day did not make any decisions on the properties, and the issue has now returned for public discussion.

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