The clock is now ticking for critics of Kelowna's proposed new police station to register their opposition.
Council on Monday formally launched the alternate approval process for the project, which carries a total cost of almost $50 million.
If about 10,000 people sign petitions before March 28 against the city's plan to borrow $42 million for construction of the new detachment on Clement Avenue, the project would be put on hold or subjected to a referendum.
Coun. Andre Blanleil, who described himself as being not usually in favour of the city spending a lot of money, said the new detachment is a necessity.
"This is not a frill. This is not an extra," Blanleil said. And the city's strategy of long-term borrowing to finance the bulk of the project is a prudent because it spreads the cost over many years and subsequent generations.
City staff estimate the cost of the detachment at $3.30 per Kelowna household, per month, for the next 30 years.
The planned building, almost three times larger than the current detachment, has an estimated lifespan of about 70 years. Construction would begin in 2015 for an opening in the latter half of 2017.