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Open house invites local residents to participate in RDOS heritage plan
Area residents had a chance last week to provide input into a Regional Heritage Strategic Plan being prepared for the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen (RDOS).
An open house was held Thursday evening at the Osoyoos Museum. Other open houses were held last week in Penticton, Keremeos and Princeton.
“The purpose of these open houses is to introduce people to the process,” said Lindsay Bourque, rural projects co-ordinator with the RDOS. “The overall objective is to understand what people really value about the region.”
The end goal, she said, is to develop a strategic plan that will give the RDOS Board direction in terms of designating properties and heritage sites.
This plan is the first of its kind in the region, Bourque said. A previous report in 1988 was more of an inventory or a catalogue of historic buildings that looked at heritage more narrowly.
And based on comments at the Penticton open house, many people also think of heritage in the narrower sense of preserving buildings.
“There is a misunderstanding about what constitutes heritage,” said Bourque. “A lot of people think it just has to do with buildings and that sort of thing.
“But what we’re looking at is more comprehensive so landscapes have been a big theme already. It can also be intangible things like memories, stories, traditions and things like that. It’s really comprehensive and dynamic.”
The plan will deal with strategic objectives and the challenges of funding, she said.
The process of preparing the strategic heritage plan is expected to take the rest of the year with the final report going to the board at the end of 2014, Bourque said.
A questionnaire and information will be posted on the RDOS website so people can learn about the process and provide input, she said.