Must 50,000 new residents live in lakeside condos?

Dear Editor:

Why are high-rise condos not being built on Baron, Leckie, Enterprise, and west Rutland, all areas near amenities?

The reason is that Mayor Colin Basran and council are accommodating developers, not new residents.

Imagine the price difference between units in identical buildings in the above areas mentioned and all those being built within a couple of blocks of the beach. Will we reach the imaginary 50,000 new residents by 2040 only if we entice them with waterfront condos?

We can ignore Basran’s rhetoric about council being the final decision makers, as we were told directly by a senior city planner that it is the developers who drive the development, including location, height and clearances.

As enablers, Basran and council will, however, rezone to allow developers to evict residents from their homes so they can build near the lake.

Disgraceful.

The intimacy of an inviting lakeshore space of human dimensions is being destroyed by developer demands, sanctioned by the mayor and council.

Don Henderson, Kelowna

Kelowna is crumbling

Dear Editor:

What is happening to my dear Kelowna? Although there is much for which to be grateful, the room for improvement is still the biggest room in the world .

Formerly tree speckled mountains are being chewed up and left with rows of scars punctuated with rooftops and balconies. 

The flatlands, once lush with fruits and nuts, now have rows of tall termite mounds ostensibly for humans habitation. Sunset Drive, once providing scenic views of lake and peak, is rapidly becoming a winding wormhole with tunnel vision. All this building at a time when homeowners insurance is more unaffordable than ever.

And in a town with an airport with only two runways and one lone hospital. Heaven forbid that multitudes should become ill all at once. 

And not much sign of solutions for the homeless or consideration for the indigenous. 

In Rutland, yet another small historic house, this one a turn of the century saltbox with gable roof, is being threatened with flattening or spiriting away, it’s fate unknown, and being replaced with a structure high enough to further obscure views. One wonders if legacy landmarks are being respectfully removed to a Heritage Park for preservation and display or just being returned to dust. 

Meanwhile, nightmarish murals have been popping up overnight on Rutland Road. Where is common sense when we need it?

Jewel Dhuru, Kelowna

Kelowna must consider wards

Dear Editor:

I completely agree with the sentiment, Rutland needs representation. As does each and every community. Though as a resident, sometimes it certainly does seem like Rutland gets the short end of the stick. Mismatched sidewalks in front of brand new developments, the dangerously incomplete bike lane along the busiest part of Rutland Road at Highway 33, the well-used crossing of Rutland Road at Mugford ignored while a brand new, ugly townhouse development went up right beside the crossing. It is a fact the added residents along with the rest of the Mugford neighborhood use the bus stop and park right across the street.

Even the brand new shelter on the corner of McCurdy has some strang mix of sidewalk and paved path, with the hydro meter out on the curb. We might as well be just some podunk, unincorporated burg for all the vision that goes into these developments.

And what about our connection to the rail trail? The best way I have found from Rutland is to go up to McCurdy and down to the highway.

But hey, thanks for replacing the perfectly fine street light and triangle on the corner of Rutland and Leathead. Silly me, I thought you were putting in a much more efficient roundabout. Oh, and also removing the only fun item at Centennial Park playground for kids older than eight, the brand new merry-go-round, thanks for that. I’m sure my kids are much safer.

Kelowna is a large municipality, covering numerous neighborhoods in five distinct communities.

Downtown, Central City, Glenmore, Mission, and Rutland. Each of these communities should have a designated councilor along with three at-large and the mayor. This way we can be sure everyone in our city has representation in council.

This would also make voting easier for everyone. Rather than identifying a long list of councilors to vote for, the list would be reduced to mayor, at-large councillors, and a community candidate.

There would be more accountability when you know which councilor is supposed to be representing your community.

Jeff Frank, Kelowna

City already too divisive

Dear Editor:

Re: “Goodbye downtown Kelowna, we might not miss you,” Oct. 9.

I can't believe that was written, worse yet, published. Shame on The Daily Courier for setting the bar so low.

A community newspaper is not a soapbox from which to espouse personal opinions of privilege. Your lack of empathy and education surrounding serious issues of mental health, addiction, and homelessness is appalling. Way to further the divisiveness of our community.

Stephanie Pascuzzo, Kelowna