Moving Opportunities Forward
Council Focus 2012-2014
Moving Opportunities Forward
To be the best mid-sized city in
Leading the development of a safe,
vibrant and sustainable city
COUNCIL FOCUS 2012-2014
Grow our economy
Council will act as a catalyst for sustained quality
employment opportunities and prosperity by
actively pursuing partnerships, strategic investment
in municipal services and infrastructure, and reinvestment
in existing assets.
Enhance citizens’ quality of life
Council will enhance citizens’ quality of life by
leveraging strong financial decisions to support
social, cultural and environmental initiatives.
Focus on results
Council will ensure Kelowna progresses towards its
community goals through innovation.
Deliver on our plan
Council will work with citizens, partners and
applicants to move opportunities forward that
create value for the community.
Proactive & pragmatic leadership
Council will focus on providing pragmatic leadership,
working together towards solutions.
City Council seeks to deliver on
the City’s mission to lead the
development of a safe, vibrant
and sustainable city.
In its decision-making, policy
development and its interactions with staff, the
public, investors and other key stakeholders,
Council will move opportunities forward.
A Focus on the Big Picture
Council sees the need for excellent and forwardlooking
plans for the City. Further to this,
key municipal investments in services and
infrastructure and effective re-investments
in existing asset management are viewed as
necessary catalysts for sustained employment
generation and prosperity in Kelowna. Council will
focus on these matters first and foremost and will
work actively from this perspective of governance.
Council will expect staff to address the execution of
plans and administration of day-to-day services.
Achieving Quality Outcomes will be Key
Council values the need to engage residents
and key stakeholders in community building,
investment and decision making processes;
however, the processes alone are not enough to
move the City forward. Council will work with the
community and with administration to make the
challenging decisions (in a timely manner) when
The City has completed a number of important
long range plans over the past three years (e.g.
the Official Community Plan, the Downtown Plan,
etc.) Council recognizes the need now to focus on
implementing the plans, ensuring strong execution,
driving quality outcomes and achieving sustained
results for Kelowna.
Collaborative Approaches are Imperative
Council supports a collaborative approach to
working with applicants, investors and the
community. A “can do” attitude will prevail.
Innovative solutions will be derived and the
opportunity for success will be enhanced by diverse
perspectives brought together to ultimately achieve
City and community objectives. There is a desire for
collaboration and a high degree of responsiveness
in moving ideas and opportunities forward.
Innovation and Risk Taking are Valued
Kelowna will progress toward its community
goals through innovation: in service delivery, in
partnerships with the community, in infrastructure
and facility investment and in financing. Council
will foster a culture of innovation by supporting City
staff in measured risk taking.
Innovation implies a change from the status quo.
This can include the need to take risks and to evolve
and do things differently than may have been
previously contemplated. Council supports staff
in the advancement of approaches, projects and
applications rooted in innovative thinking.
Consistency and Alignment Build Confidence
Investment confidence increases in communities
where Council and staff act with consistency.
Council will work actively with administration to
continue aligning plans and will commit to acting
consistently in their implementation.
Pragmatic Leadership can be Expected
Collaborative approaches require a genuine
commitment to active listening and for City staff to
work together toward solutions and results. Council
will focus on providing pragmatic leadership and
decision-making with a commitment to achieving
Decision Making will be Fair but Firm
Kelowna is a desirable place to live. As the
community becomes increasingly known on the
world stage, growth and pressure for development
will continue to follow.
While Council recognizes the need for employment
and investment growth, a “fair but firm” approach
will be employed in the evaluation of applications
and other matters of Council. Council recognizes
that a specific bar (or standards of expectation)
must be established to ensure the quality of life and
quality of place prized by residents is maintained.
The corollary to these standards is that the
parameters of expectation for investors are then
clarified – this will enhance Kelowna’s reputation as
a place for investment.
The manner in which Council
intends to set the tone for
the City of Kelowna provides
greater clarity of expectations
in how they intend to lead
and govern the City. Beyond
how Council intends to act, staff will benefit from
understanding where Council stands on core
matters of governance.
Planning and Development
Council views their role as enablers of sustainable
investment in the community. They believe
sustainable investment is best achieved through a
fair yet firm implementation of the City’s plans and
Council seeks to encourage and support investment
whereby advantages accrue to the community,
further City plans and enhance quality of life while
also helping to achieve objectives of the investors/
applicants. Win-win approaches will be highly
Staff will be empowered, highly motivated and
accountable to work with applicants (pro-active
approach) to help shepherd applications through
their respective processes.
Law, Order and Enforcement
The City of Kelowna has a variety of bylaws which
require development, refinement and enforcement.
Bylaw enforcement is an important function in
ensuring health, safety and community standards.
The level of bylaw enforcement and the resultant
approach, staffing and expenditure levels are
decisions for each Council to make as they set the
Council’s approach is:
For bylaws which genuinely serve important
preservation of health and safety purposes be
actively enforced by City staff; and
To review remaining bylaws to determine
their cost versus benefit and determine if
streamlining/harmonization can occur to
simplify the enforcement regime and to clarify
expectations for community standards.
The City of Kelowna, through its Official Community
Plan and Council Policy on Sustainable Municipal
Infrastructure, has established a multiple bottom
line framework to evaluate program and project
investments from a holistic perspective that
incorporates economic, social, cultural and
Council supports the continued use of the multiple
bottom line framework and will endeavour to seek
a balanced approach to decision making. While a
holistic perspective is critical, Council recognizes
the nature of our economic times and will work to
ensure prosperity is fostered in our community.
ON KELOWNA’S FUTURE
Council members reflected on the
core issues which could influence
Kelowna’s growth and evolution as
a community over the next 10 to 20
years. Key indicators that influences
corporate and strategic planning
processes were identified.
Regional Governance and Impact on Growth
The region is growing and Kelowna’s growth is
outpacing the provincial average. Growth in the
region’s communities also continues to exceed
growth experienced in other areas of the province.
Development on lands in proximity to the City’s
boundaries has multiple impacts on Kelowna’s
infrastructure, services and municipal finances and
will require careful consideration on a variety of
fronts. There may be a need for greater and more
direct City involvement in land use matters on
and outside the City’s boundaries (e.g. there may
be a need in specific circumstances to consider
boundary restructuring where it would provide for
enhanced effectiveness and efficiency in municipal
service delivery and governance).
Water availability, water quality and the approach
to governance for water-related matters will
impact quality of life, opportunity for growth and
development, and sustainability of agriculture
in Kelowna and the broader region. Effective
leadership and coordination are required when it
comes to water-related matters.
University of British Columbia and
The UBC and Okanagan College campuses
in Kelowna are growing hubs of innovation,
employment and training for Kelowna’s workforce
of today and tomorrow. Continued evolution of the
campuses and integration in the community are
desirable to achieve benefits for all. The annual
economic impact of students, faculty and staff at
both institutions exceeds $1.5 billion. Institutions
of higher learning continue to play a growing
and important role in the regional and provincial
Kelowna International Airport
Beyond providing access for tourism, Kelowna
International Airport (YLW) is an integral and
growing part of the regional economy. The 2010
Economic Impact Assessment notes that the airport
creates close to 2,700 jobs (direct, indirect and
induced) and over $600 million in total economic
impact on the provincial economy.
Sustained investment and future planning for YLW
are important to support employment growth and
opportunity in Kelowna.
The Greying Population
Kelowna’s population is aging. The City’s amenities,
natural features, services and housing are attracting
more seniors and those seeking to retire. From
one perspective, this presents challenges 20 years
in the future (e.g. re-purposing seniors’ housing).
From another vantage point, the greying population
and migration of seniors from around the world to
Kelowna offers access to a skilled workforce which
may provide considerable connections, coaching
and mentoring as well as investment and business
development opportunities for local governments,
businesses and non-profit groups.
With the growth in the seniors population and in
other sectors of the economy, there will be a need
to attract skilled and unskilled labour to Kelowna.
The price of housing is a concern as Kelowna tries
to ensure a sustainable workforce of the future.
The community’s ability to integrate a diversity of
newcomers raises other questions of readiness.
Residents have cited in the 2012 Citizen Survey
that transportation is one of the items of greatest
concern to the community. Investment in multiple
modes of transportation enabling intra- and intercommunity
travel will be of high importance for
continued community growth and quality of life.
Preserving and Enhancing the
In the 2012 Citizen Survey, residents placed a high
value and priority on the natural environment and
its influence on Kelowna as a great place to live. As
a community facing continued growth pressures,
Kelowna will need to be pro-active, creative and
diligent in its efforts to preserve, protect and
enhance the natural environment.
Planning for Infrastructure Renewal
Twenty years in the future, Kelowna will face
considerable re-investment costs for the
rehabilitation and renewal of infrastructure and
facilities which will be reaching the end of useful
lifecycles. A plan is required to ensure these
renewals and investments can occur in a timely
Emergence as a Major Centre
Downloading from senior governments (service
delivery and responsibilities) to local governments
is projected to continue. Grant programs will be
less available. There will be a need for the City to
elevate its engagement with provincial and federal
governments to make funding/cost-sharing happen,
particularly for projects and services of major
importance to the community and region.
Changing Land Use Patterns
There will be a desire for increased housing options
and choice in the community. Growth in the seniors
population and the need to provide attainable
housing for younger residents (the workforce of the
future) would suggest increasing densities in the
City’s Town Centres as per the Official Community
Plan policies. This will create additional impacts
and needs for investment in infrastructure,
transportation facilities and service delivery.
There will be a need to continue working with
the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), the
province, the federal government and community
groups to enhance the sense of safety in the
community. The community may need to increase
their engagement (or re-engage) in safer cities
Rise of the Technology Sector
An increasing number of technology professionals
are incubating businesses in Kelowna. Growing
pools of talent coupled with a significant and
growing “angel investor” community suggest
additional momentum in the future. City
investments in marketing, infrastructure and other
items should be considered to foster growth in this
Need for Partnership with First Nations
Westbank First Nation and other First Nations in the
Okanagan Valley are becoming important players in
the regional economy. Opportunities will emerge to
work with First Nations on matters of infrastructure
investment, business attraction, governance,
service delivery and capacity building. The City will
do well to continue fostering progressively stronger
With grants and other senior government funding in
short supply, the City will need to specifically target
municipal investments where additional leverage
can be achieved through community, private sector,
and/or public partnerships.
Council has set out a 3-3-3
framework for the establishment
of service and project initiatives.
The first phase represents areas of
focus for Council’s existing term,
Much of the effort in this term
will revolve around building on momentum
created through previous Councils, completing
progressive and well-considered plans for the future
and beginning the process of establishing the
foundation for major projects to be completed in
2012-2014 Priority Items
Work with landowners and investors to encourage an attractive waterfront
development and hotel, in conjunction with the Downtown revitalization
efforts and public pier project.
Tourism Centre Collaborate with relevant government agencies and community groups to
secure an agreement for a new tourism centre.
Consider how the City of Kelowna (Council and staff) may invest and get
more directly involved with marketing and promotion of the community
and investment opportunities with the goal of enhancing employment
opportunities in Kelowna.
Develop a plan for Cedar Avenue.
Develop a GPS-linked mobile service application that would allow citizens
and visitors to note repair needs, provide feedback and enhance service
delivery effectiveness and efficiency.
Target City investments in parks to serve as a catalyst for further
community and private sector investment/collaboration.
Evaluate a one-stop shop for community, health, social and employment
services for those in need in the downtown.
Advance the revitalization of Rutland Town Centre, building on the desire
from merchants, residents, property owners and other stakeholders.
Attract startups in the high-tech sector by providing zoned and serviced
land required for incubator facilities.
2015-2017 Priority Items
The second phase will require at least three years of groundwork.
Provide a multi-modal transportation connection between the University of
British Columbia Okanagan Campus and the Kelowna International Airport
(John Hindle Drive).
Create a cultural corridor along Benvoulin Road linking heritage, agriculture,
First Nation lands/interests, tourism and community facilities.
Explore the construction of a new boat launch in the City’s north end to
meet increased demand for boating on Okanagan Lake.
Work with the investment community and property owners to site a new
hotel in the downtown core in addition to a waterfront hotel.
Consider City completion of pedestrian connections where development/
re-development will not result in sidewalk construction/extension.
2018-2020 Priority Items
The third phase represents initiatives which will require the most time and likely the most collaboration
with the public, government agencies and others to affect.
Build the case, select alignment and engage regional, provincial, federal
and First Nation governments to advance the second bridge crossing of
Okanagan Lake, recognizing the need to meet a 15-to-20-year plan horizon.
Complete the development of the Mill Creek Linear Corridor.
1435 Water Street
Kelowna, BC V1Y 1J4
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