Posted on 15 March 2007 by admin
– Developer solves relocation issue for mobile home owners –
(OSOYOOS TIMES — March 14, 2007) –
By Lawrence McMahenrnOsoyoos Times
The new owners of the 70-acre Willow Beach property at the north end of Osoyoos Lake plan to apply in a couple of weeks for rezoning to allow them to build a major mixed-use residential development.
The owners, Georgia Laine Developments, of Vancouver, held a second round of open houses in Osoyoos and Oliver on March 6-7 to share the results of their first open houses, held Jan. 30-31, and to show people the kind of development they want to build.
Display boards at the latest open houses said questionnaires filled out by 77 people at the first public consultations showed that the community felt the site should be redeveloped in an environmentally sensitive manner, should allow for a mixed-use development, and should house people of all ages and income levels.rnAt the same time, the Georgia Laine information stated that the site's current zoning doesn't allow for that full range of development, or for enough residential density and height to make the project financially viable.
For that reason, Project Architect Tim Ankenman says Georgia Laine will apply to the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS) in two to three weeks for changes to the Official Community Plan (OCP) and zoning to allow for a larger, mixed-use community development.
Ankenman says Georgia Laine envisions a range of residential and commercial uses on the property, creating a real community. This would include single-family homes, duplexes, townhouses, four-storey apartment buildings, and a mid- to high-rise apartment building, small retail stores possibly with apartments or lofts above them, and possibly a wine museum or similar cultural/tourism attraction. Preliminary drawings also propose new channels winding through the property, providing access to the lake from many of the homes.
We propose a real mixture of types of housing. We want young families, singles, seniors and empty-nesters, Ankenman says.
The distinctive stand of large willow trees along the beachfront would be preserved.
Georgia Laine is also considering including alternative energy sources at the development such as wind, solar or geothermal power. The developer is also currently looking at water supply and sewer-system options for the property.
The developer has apparently gone a long way towards resolving one outstanding issue at Willow Beach “ the future housing situation for many of the current residents of the property's 38-pad mobile home park.
A number of the residents had worried about loss of the value of their mobile homes, since they may not find another park willing to accept their trailers.
But Ankenman says the head of Georgia Laine Developments is buying property at Ollala, a small retirement-oriented community just north of Keremeos, on which he will develop a mobile home park for those from Willow Beach who want to relocate there. He will pay the costs and make arrangements for moving their mobile homes.
Gail De Gelder, who with husband Mike is a resident of Willow Beach, says she thinks the gesture is absolutely wonderful “ above and beyond what they were called to do. She says she will be happy to make the move to Ollala, about a half-hour drive from Osoyoos.
Ankenman says as of March 5 there were about eight mobile home owners interested in the move, and he says everyone from Willow Beach who wants to move should be able to.
The Willow Beach property was listed for sale last fall by owner Pearl Quintal for $19.5 million. She agreed last November to sell it to Georgia Laine Developments for an undisclosed amount. The property includes a long beach, the 38-pad mobile home park, a 120-site campground, a four-acre Quintal family yard and home, and 65 acres of farmland.