Draft 2040 OCP

Urban Centres

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Last Updated: 
September 17, 2021

DRAFT VERSION FOR REVIEW - FALL 2021

2040 OCP - Chapter 4 - Urban Centres chapter header, image of businesses in Landmark area

When most people think of cities, they think of places that are dense, vibrant hubs humming with activity all day long. These places are where work, live and play collide to build a whole greater than the sum of each part. Not only are these types of places vital and engaging places to be, they also play a central role in Kelowna’s Growth Strategy as the City’s Urban Centres. By investing in and supporting our Urban Centres, we are also able to make the shift away outward urban growth and grow in a way that embraces complete communities and sustainable transportation options.

However, Urban Centres do not happen by accident and they do not happen overnight. They are the result of careful, deliberate decisions and actions over a long period of time. Directions around land use, housing, and transportation must all work together towards the same ends if our Urban Centres are to succeed.

Urban Centres support the City’s greatest intensity and range of land uses; from offices, retail to restaurants, schools and parks – to support a complete community. A variety of medium to high density housing types and tenures should also be available for residents, all supported by easy, reliable access to multiple sustainable transportation options. Even with those key elements in place, Urban Centres must also create compelling, attractive and walkable environments for people and by satisfying the community’s need to engage with and to celebrate culture.

Land Use and Urban Design

2040 OCP - Urban Centres - Pillars related to Land Use and Urban Design

Land use decisions in Urban Centres should support a greater intensity of employment and residential density to ensure they become Kelowna’s primary hubs of activity. They should aim to provide all daily necessities within a short walk or cycle, preparing communities for greater resiliency. The quality of public spaces is also critical to the enjoyment that people have living in or visiting Urban Centres, making investments in the public realm vital to their success. These complete communities should also reflect the diversity of the citizens of Kelowna and build connections between the people that live in, work in and visit them.

Both the City and the community have a role to play in making the Urban Centres exciting hubs of activity. New development should carefully consider its role in creating a lively street and be very thoughtful of the impacts of larger, taller buildings in the surrounding neighbourhood. The City should support new and innovative approaches to land use and continue to prioritize investments in parks and public spaces that contribute to the vibrancy of Urban Centres, while advancing inclusion and support services for existing and future citizens.

Objective 4.1. Strengthen the Urban Centres as Kelowna’s primary hubs of activity.

Policy 4.1.1. Live/Work Balance.
Direct growth in Urban Centres to achieve densities of 150-250 combined residents and jobs per hectare, with a composition of 2:1 residents to jobs or as outlined in an Urban Centre Plan. Refine these density targets as Urban Centre Plans are developed.

Policy 4.1.2. Urban Centre Hierarchy.
Focus the greatest intensity of uses and scale of development Downtown in recognition of its role as the largest Urban Centre. Scale development in other Urban Centres in accordance with Figure 4.1 and based on their anticipated context, supporting infrastructure and amenities.

2040 OCP - Urban Centre Hierarchy
Figure 4.1: Urban Centre Hierarchy.

Policy 4.1.3. Urban Centres Roadmap.
Continue to use the Urban Centres Roadmap to provide guidance for growth and development in Urban Centres.

Policy 4.1.4. Office Development.
Direct large office developments to Urban Centres first, with emphasis on Downtown as a preferred destination. Within Urban Centres, encourage office development near the Frequent Transit Network, transit stations and exchanges or as guided by an Urban Centre Plan.

Policy 4.1.5. Partnerships with Post-Secondary Institutions.
Consider creative partnerships to attract post-secondary institutions to Urban Centres and to promote economic and cultural growth in those neighbourhoods.  

Policy 4.1.6. High Density Residential Development.
Direct medium and high density residential development to Urban Centres to provide a greater mix of housing near employment and to maximize use of existing and new infrastructure, services and amenities.

Policy 4.1.7. Temporary and Mobile Uses.
Support temporary and mobile uses, such as patio applications and parklets to animate streets, public spaces and publicly accessible private spaces.

Policy 4.1.8. Car-oriented Development.
Direct large format retail and other commercial development that is car dependent to Regional Commercial lands to ensure that Urban Centres continue to grow into the City’s most walkable neighbourhoods.

Policy 4.1.9. Sequencing Development.
Discourage development that would result in adjacent properties being unable to develop in a manner consistent with the objectives and policies of the Official Community Plan or relevant Urban Centre Plan.

Policy 4.1.10. Public Space through Future Development.
Develop policies and regulations that incentivize the provision of onsite publicly accessible open space early in planning process to further enhance the public amenities in Urban Centres to enhance overall development benefit.

Policy 4.1.11. Residential Amenity Space.
Develop policies and regulations that incentivize the provision of private amenity space early in the planning process as part of multi-unit residential development to enhance overall development benefit.

Objective 4.2. Foster more inclusive and socially connected Urban Centres.

Policy 4.2.1. Accessible Community Services.
Prioritize the following services in Urban Centres to create a more accessible and inclusive community, including, but not limited to:

  • Government services;
  • Medical, health and wellness services;
  • Childcare, schools, libraries, and post-secondary institutions;
  • Places of worship, recreation centres, and other community gathering spaces;
  • Food retail, services and programs;
  • Banks and credit unions; and
  • Accessible year round public washrooms.

Policy 4.2.2. Safety Net Supports and Services.
Recognize Urban Centres as key locations for safety net supports and services, such as shelters and services that support them, for people experiencing homelessness. Recognize that shelters are used by a diversity of people with different needs such as women fleeing violence, youth and adults. Ensure information is provided to the community to foster positive relationships and promote acceptance for these supports, services and the citizens that are using them.

Policy 4.2.3. Accessible and Welcoming Urban Centres.
Design civic facilities, public spaces, streetscapes, infrastructure, programs and services that are accessible, available and inclusive of all ages, incomes and abilities, including seniors, people with diverse abilities, Indigenous people, and newcomers. Prioritize accessibility retrofits in Urban Centres for existing facilities.

Policy 4.2.4. Walled Developments.
Discourage development that is enclosed on all sides by walls, gates or other physical or visual barriers that hinder efforts to create more pedestrian, bicycle and transit friendly communities, block access to public park land or inhibit the efficient use of infrastructure. 

Policy 4.2.5. Urban Centre School Sites.
Encourage the retention of existing schools and the location of new schools in Urban Centres. Locations within Urban Centres should incorporate a design approach that prioritizes the needs of children while responding to smaller land acquisition requirements, including, but not limited to the following approaches:

  • Shared use of facilities, sports fields and playgrounds;
  • Pedestrian oriented access and site circulation;
  • Increased building heights; and
  • Reduced parking standards.

Policy 4.2.6. Child Care Spaces.
Facilitate the development of child care spaces in Urban Centres that are accessible, affordable, and inclusive spaces that meet the needs of the community.

Objective 4.3. Protect and Increase Greenery in Urban Centres.

Policy 4.3.1. Engage Nature.
Encourage nature within Urban Centres with design elements that include, but are not limited to:

  • Natural connections such as wildlife corridors and creeks;
  • Habitat for native and pollinator species;
  • Urban forestry; and
  • Green roofs and/or rooftop gardens.

Policy 4.3.2. Urban Forest Canopy.
Protect exiting mature trees where possible and encourage the installation of street trees in Urban Centre development and streetscape improvement projects. Design considering the critical role trees play in pedestrian comfort, cooling of the urban heat island, habitat for local animal species and beautification of the public realm. Implement requirements for the specific needs of trees in the urban streetscape, to protect soil volume, roots, trunk and canopy over the long term. Give significant trees priority for protection through land development.

Policy 4.3.3. Integrated Street Design.
Integrate innovative street design and tree planting details to achieve storm water management and water-wise objectives in the urban setting.

Objective 4.4. Reinforce Downtown as the Urban Centre with the greatest diversity and intensity of uses in the City.

Policy 4.4.1. Civic Precinct Plan.
Use the Civic Precinct Plan for detailed policy guidance Downtown, including guidance for the location of major civic and cultural facilities. Where policies conflict with policies in the Official Community Plan, the Official Community Plan policies shall take precedence.

Policy 4.4.2. Downtown Skyline.
Support development Downtown that is generally consistent with Map 4.1 to accomplish the following:

  • Tapering of heights from taller buildings in the centre of Downtown to lower buildings towards Okanagan Lake and adjacent Core Area Neighbourhoods;
  • Preservation of the existing form and character of historic Bernard Avenue and other heritage sites;
  • Consistency with the objectives of the Civic Precinct Plan; and
  • The development of taller buildings that incorporate distinct architectural features in strategic locations near Okanagan Lake.

Policy 4.4.3. Taller Downtown Buildings.
With due consideration of the objectives of Policy 4.4.2, consider support for development that is higher than the heights outlined in Map 4.1 where the proposal contains significant benefit to Kelowna citizens, including some or a combination of the following:

  • An affordable, supportive and/or rental housing component that further advances Urban Centre housing objectives;
  • A significant public amenity that supports the fostering of more inclusive and socially connected Urban Centres, such as parks, public spaces, schools, post-secondary institutions or childcare facilities;
  • Offsite considerations, including enhanced streetscapes, provision of Active Transportation Corridors, tree canopy protection and enhancement, or green infrastructure within the road right of way;
  • Smaller tower floorplates to mitigate the impact on views and shadowing; and/or
  • Outstanding and extraordinary architectural design.

Policy 4.4.4. Bernard Avenue Character.
Ensure redevelopment on Bernard Avenue is designed to reinforce the continuous streetwall, two to three storey building and/or podium heights, and narrow building frontages that embody the high street character of Bernard Avenue and abutting retail streets.

Policy 4.4.5. Downtown Street Character.
Support development in the Downtown Urban Centre that includes the following characteristics at grade, as outlined in Map 4.2.

  • Retail space along Bernard Avenue integrated with a high-quality urban streetscape experience, reinforcing the street as Downtown’s high street;
  • Retail space along designated retail streets to create more dynamic spaces with high levels of pedestrian activity; and
  • Civic and cultural uses, with supporting retail uses along the Art Walk and portions of Water Street designated as civic streets, in keeping with the directions of the Civic Precinct Plan.

Policy 4.4.6. Downtown Heritage Revitalization Agreements.
Consider the use of Heritage Revitalization Agreements to provide greater flexibility for redevelopment proposals of historic buildings in the Downtown for projects that protect and conserve heritage value of buildings in a manner that is consistent with the National Standards and Guidelines for Historic Conservation, as amended.

Policy 4.4.7. Downtown Revitalization Tax Exemption.
Continue to support a revitalization tax exemption program to encourage investment Downtown.

Objective 4.5. Promote more residential development to balance employment uses in the Capri-Landmark Urban Centre.

Policy 4.5.1. Capri-Landmark Urban Centre Plan.
Use the Capri-Landmark Urban Centre Plan for detailed policy guidance in the Capri-Landmark Urban Centre.

Policy 4.5.2. Capri-Landmark Building Heights.
Support building heights in the Capri-Landmark Urban Centre that are generally consistent with Map 4.3 to accomplish the goals and objectives of the Capri-Landmark Urban Centre Plan.

Policy 4.5.3. Capri-Landmark Street Character.
Support development in the Capri-Landmark Urban Centre that includes the land use characteristics at grade outlined in Map 4.4 to support the goals and objectives of the Capri-Landmark Urban Centre Plan.

Objective 4.6. Support infill and redevelopment to promote housing diversity and enhanced services and amenities in the Pandosy Urban Centre.

Policy 4.6.1. Pandosy Building Heights.
Undertake a building heights study as part of an Urban Centre Plan process for the Pandosy Urban Centre. Until this process is complete, support development in the Pandosy Urban Centre that is generally consistent with the building heights outlined in Map 4.5 to accomplish the following:

  • Focusing taller buildings along Pandosy Street and Lakeshore Road and tapering heights down towards Okanagan Lake to maximize the area’s visual and physical connection to the lake; and
  • Tapering building heights down east of Richter Street to transition into adjacent Core Area neighbourhoods.

Policy 4.6.2. Taller Pandosy Buildings.
Prior to the development of a neighbourhood plan for the Pandosy Urban Centre, and with due consideration of the objectives of Policy 4.6.1, consider support for development that is higher than 25% of the heights outlined in Map 4.5. where the proposal contains significant benefit to Kelowna citizens, including some or a combination of the following:

  • An affordable, supportive and/or rental housing component that further advances Urban Centre housing objectives;
  • A significant public amenity that supports the fostering of more inclusive and socially connected Urban Centres, such as parks, public spaces, schools, post-secondary institutions or childcare facilities;
  • Offsite considerations, including enhanced streetscapes, provision of Active Transportation Corridors, tree canopy protection and enhancement, or green infrastructure within the road right of way;
  • Smaller tower floorplates to mitigate the impact on views and shadowing; and/or
  • Outstanding and extraordinary architectural design.

Development proposals that exceed a height greater than 25% over those outlined in Map 4.5 may be considered in the area signaled as the “Pandosy / Lakeshore Corridor”  but should not exceed 14 storeys, with due consideration of the attributes above.

Policy 4.6.3. Pandosy Retail Street Character.
Support development in the Pandosy Urban Centre that includes the following characteristics at grade, as outlined in Map 4.6:

  • Retail space along Pandosy Street and Lakeshore Road integrated with a high-quality urban streetscape experience, reinforcing this corridor as the Urban Centre’s high street; and
  • Retail space along Tutt Street and nearby streets in the “Pandosy Village” area designated as retail streets to create more dynamic spaces with high levels of pedestrian activity.

Policy 4.6.4. Pandosy Character Transition.
Encourage new development along the south side of KLO Road west of Richter Street that is complimentary with the form and character of the “Pandosy Village” area, as illustrated in Map 4.5, through the following approaches:

  • Design of retail facades that are consistent in scale with the adjacent Pandosy Village to create a cohesive high street along Pandosy Street and Lakeshore Road;
  • Identification of new streets and pathways that break up the shopping centre blocks, providing better east/west connectivity;
  • Consistent design of off-site infrastructure, such as sidewalks, street furniture, and street trees; and
  • Provision of new public spaces to provide more activity at the pedestrian scale.

Policy 4.6.5. Okanagan College.
Support the continued growth of the Okanagan College KLO campus and its integration with rest of the Pandosy Urban Centre.

Objective 4.7. Focus new development in Rutland strategically to create a new high-density business and residential hub to support improved services and amenities.

Policy 4.7.1. Rutland Building Heights.
Undertake a building heights study as part of an Urban Centre Plan process for the Rutland Urban Centre. Until this process is complete, support development in the Rutland Urban Centre that is generally consistent with the building heights outlined in Map 4.7 to accomplish the following:

  • Focusing taller buildings between Shepherd Road, Dougall Road, Rutland Road and Highway 33 to support the viability of Rutland’s designated high streets, the Rutland Transit Exchange and Rutland Centennial Park;
  • Directing more modest heights along the Highway 33 and Rutland Road corridors to support transit use and the viability of commercial uses in those two corridors;
  • Tapering heights down towards surrounding Core Area Neighbourhoods.

Policy 4.7.2. Taller Rutland Buildings.
Prior to the development of a neighbourhood plan for the Rutland Urban Centre, and with due consideration of the objectives of Policy 4.7.1, consider support for development that is higher than the heights outlined in Map 4.7, where the proposal contains significant benefit to Kelowna citizens, including some or a combination of the following:

  • An affordable, supportive and/or rental housing component that further advances Urban Centre housing objectives;
  • A significant public amenity that supports the fostering of more inclusive and socially connected Urban Centres, such as parks, public spaces, schools, post-secondary institutions or childcare facilities;
  • Offsite considerations, including enhanced streetscapes, provision of Active Transportation Corridors, tree canopy protection and enhancement, or green infrastructure within the road right of way;
  • Smaller tower floorplates to mitigate the impact on views and shadowing; and/or
  • Outstanding and extraordinary architectural design.

Policy 4.7.3. Rutland Retail Street Hierarchy.
Support development in the Rutland Urban Centre that includes the following characteristics at grade, as outlined in Map 4.8:

  • Retail space along Roxby Road and portions of Shepard and Asher Road, integrated with Roxby Square and a high-quality urban streetscape experience, reinforcing these streets as the Urban Centre’s high streets and creating a new centre for Rutland; and
  • Retail space along designated retail streets, including central portions of Highway 33 and Rutland Road to reinforce those major transportation routes and streets surrounding Rutland’s high streets, to support the evolution of a new centre for Rutland.

Policy 4.7.4. Additional Rutland High Streets.
Identify additional high streets as part of a Rutland Urban Centre Plan or other neighbourhood planning initiative.

Policy 4.7.5. Highway 33 Streetscape.
Collaborate with the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure to advance beautification efforts along Highway 33 through the Rutland Urban Centre, with due consideration for the timing of other infrastructure improvements along the corridor.

Policy 4.7.6. Rutland Revitalization Tax Exemption.
Continue to support a revitalization tax exemption program to encourage investment in Rutland.

Objective 4.8. Support modest residential development to transition Midtown into a transit-supportive neighbourhood.

Policy 4.8.1. Midtown Residential Development.
Prioritize the development of multi-unit residential uses over employment uses in Midtown to support a greater live work balance.

Policy 4.8.2. Midtown Urbanization.
To address Midtown’s deficiency in the pedestrian environment, poor street connectivity, lack of housing choices and public spaces, support the redevelopment of properties where the proposal demonstrates the following characteristics:

  • Improved street connectivity, particularly east-west connectivity, through the identification of new streets and pathways that break up large blocks;
  • Improved pedestrian environment;
  • Identification and dedication of parks and public spaces;
  • Integration of transit infrastructure, such as transit exchanges for example; and
  • Housing mix, with consideration for affordable housing as outlined in the Healthy Housing Strategy.

Policy 4.8.3. Midtown Building Heights.
Undertake a building heights study as part of an Urban Centre Plan process for the Midtown Urban Centre. Until this process is complete, support development in the Midtown Urban Centre  that is generally consistent with the building heights outlined in Map 4.9. Building heights should be highest towards Highway 97, the Frequent Transit Network and transit exchanges, tapering down towards Springfield Road.  

Policy 4.8.4. Taller Midtown Buildings.
Prior to the development of a Midtown Urban Centre Plan, and with due consideration of the objectives of Policy 4.7.3 consider development that is higher than the heights outlined in Map 4.9 where the proposal further advances the objectives of Policy 4.8.2.

Policy 4.8.5. Midtown Street Character.
Support development in the Midtown Urban Centre that includes the following characteristics at grade, as outlined in Map 4.10:

  • Retail space along Highway 97, Springfield Road, Cooper Road and Dilworth Drive; and
  • Establishing a new east-west road connection from Baron Road to Kent Road via Agassiz Road

Identify other street characteristics through a future Midtown Urban Centre Plan or other neighbourhood planning process.

Policy 4.8.6. Transit Supportive Midtown.
To further support higher capacity transit along Highway 97, locate buildings closer to and oriented towards the highway, provide additional landscaping treatments, and do not locate surface parking between the highway and new development.

Objective 4.9. Transition sensitively to adjacent neighbourhoods and public spaces.

Policy 4.9.1. Transitioning to Industrial and Service Commercial Uses.
Provide transitions between Urban Centres and adjacent industrial or service commercial uses to reduce the impacts of nuisances from those lands and to protect them from speculation for residential and commercial development. Transition approaches may include, but are not limited to:

  • Introducing transitional uses that reduce compatibility concerns, such as offices, and professional and personal services;
  • Strategically orienting residential and retail commercial uses on the site away from the adjacent industrial and service commercial uses; and
  • Transitioning to lower densities and heights towards the edge of Urban Centres.

Policy 4.9.2. Transitioning to Core Area Neighbourhoods.
Use height and scale to ensure that buildings avoid height cliffs and shadowing, transitioning gradually to adjacent Core Area Neighbourhoods.

Policy 4.9.3. Shadowing Impacts.
Use height and scale to minimize the shadowing impacts of mid-rise and high-rise buildings on adjacent parks, public spaces and high streets.

Objective 4.10. Encourage initiatives in Urban Centres to supplement the local food system to increase food security, equitable access to healthy food and social connections.

Policy 4.10.1. Equitable Food Access.
Encourage the inclusion of small and mid-size grocery stores, seasonal farmers markets and emergency food services in Urban Centre neighbourhoods.

Policy 4.10.2. Farmer’s Markets.
Encourage and facilitate the development of both year-round and seasonal farmer’s markets in Urban Centres to provide access to healthy food options.

Policy 4.10.3. Urban Agriculture.
Encourage urban agriculture that uses integrated pest management practices as a way of supplementing the local food system and reducing greenhouse gas emissions associated with food production, processing, and transportation. In Urban Centres, support and encourage urban agriculture using approaches that include, but are not limited to:

  • Food production on public and private land including rooftops, beehives, and edible landscaping on residential boulevards, park land, backyards, and rights-of-way
  • Multi-residential shared gardens and services (i.e. water and storage) in new developments; and
  • Private and non-profit sector universally-accessible community gardens, considering the use of City-owned land for use of community gardens where appropriate.

Policy 4.10.4. Indigenous Forest Gardens.
Partner with syilx/Okanagan communities to develop, forest gardens that focus on the cultivation of native and culturally important species of plants for food and medicine.

Objective 4.11. Ensure a compatible urban-rural interface that protects agricultural uses.

Policy 4.11.1. Agricultural Land Protection.
Retain the agricultural land base for the long-term by supporting the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) and by protecting agricultural lands from the impacts of adjacent development and redevelopment. 

Policy 4.11.2. Urban-Rural Interface Uses.
Where a property is adjacent to agricultural lands, encourage land uses that are compatible with adjacent agricultural uses, such as urban agriculture and passive recreational uses. Encourage uses that accommodate people who may be at risk, such as seniors, children and people with health challenges, to parcels that are not adjacent to agriculture to limit interface incompatibilities.

Policy 4.11.3. Urban-Rural Buffers.
Where a property is adjacent to land in the ALR ensure that development limits associated negative impacts on adjacent agricultural operations by including appropriate buffers, setbacks and site planning, consistent with the Farm Protection Development Permit Guidelines outlined in Chapter 22: Farm Protection Development Permit Area.

Housing

2040 OCP - Urban Centres - Pillars related to Housing

As Urban Centres become even more desirable places for living, the demand for housing in these amenity-rich areas will continue to increase. This demand could make it more difficult for lower income citizens to find housing that is attainable or affordable in Urban Centres, where services and amenities are within easy walking distance and car ownership is not required.

To address this, the City will encourage the development of new rental options and protection of existing rental stock in the Urban Centres to ensure housing options for a range of ages and incomes. Urban Centres will be prioritized for partnerships with senior government for housing types across the Wheelhouse as per the Healthy Housing Strategy including shelters and housing with supports to ensure that these citizens are close to important services. The City will explore ways to limit displacement of lower income citizens currently living in Urban Centres to ensure all citizens have access to housing in close proximity to services and amenities.

These outcomes cannot be achieved by the City alone. Partnerships with the non-profit sector, the development community and senior levels of government will be needed to provide stable, affordable housing in Kelowna’s Urban Centres.

Objective 4.12. Increase the diversity of housing types and tenures to create inclusive, affordable and complete Urban Centres.

Policy 4.12.1. Diverse Housing Forms.
Ensure a diverse mix of medium density and high density housing forms that support a variety of households, income levels and life stages.

Policy 4.12.2. Family-Friendly Housing.
Incorporate ground-oriented units in the design of multi-family developments to support family-friendly housing types. Ensure that multi-unit developments include a variety of unit sizes, encouraging 10 per cent of new units to be three or more bedrooms.

Policy 4.12.3. Diverse Housing Tenures.
Encourage a range of rental and ownership tenures that support a variety of households, income levels and life stages. Promote underrepresented forms of tenure, including but not limited to co-housing, fee-simple row housing, co-ops, and rent-to-own.

Policy 4.12.4. City Land Acquisition.  
Focus land acquisition and housing partnerships in the Urban Centres, in addition to the Core Area, to support affordable rental housing near transit, services and amenities.

Policy 4.12.5. Social Connections Through Design.
Encourage housing design that incorporates private open space, rooftops, gardens, greenspace and children’s play areas to foster social connections, inclusion and intergenerational relationships.

Policy 4.12.6. Accessible Design.
Integrate universal design features and principles to create housing options for people of all ages and abilities, including those aging in place.

Objective 4.13. Protect citizens from displacement due to Urban Centre development.

Policy 4.13.1. Housing with Supports.
Prioritize the development of subsidized housing and housing with supports in the Urban Centres in addition to the Core Area, particularly near employment, public transit, services and amenities. Promote acceptance by the community for these supports, services and the citizens that are using them.

Policy 4.13.2. Displacement Effects of Gentrification. 
Ensure Urban Centre planning initiatives and significant redevelopment opportunities include affordable housing and access to services to ensure low to moderate income renters are protected from displacement effects of gentrification.

Policy 4.13.3. Tenant Assistance.
Work towards the creation of a Council policy to protect tenants displaced by redevelopment through fair relocation assistance from the developer. Such relocation assistance should ensure that tenants retain their access to services and amenities, such as employment, transportation and schools.

Objective 4.14. Protect the rental stock in Urban Centres.

Policy 4.14.1. Protection of Existing Rental Stock.
Ensure retention or replacement of existing rental units as redevelopment occurs in the Urban Centres through planning tools that may include, but are not limited to, Rental Only Zoning and Rental Replacement Obligations.

Policy 4.14.2. Rental Conversion.
Prohibit the conversion of existing residential rental buildings to condominium status when the rental vacancy rate falls below five per cent in Kelowna, unless the conversion is for the purpose of creating affordable rental housing with a Section 219 covenant registered on each strata title.

Policy 4.14.3. Short-Term Rentals.
Ensure short-term rental accommodations limits impact on the long-term rental housing supply.

Transportation

2040 OCP - Urban Centres - Pillars related to Transportation

Kelowna’s Urban Centres will be hubs of high-density living and employment, generating a significant number of shorter trips. The transportation response in Urban Centres acknowledges that low-carbon transportation options such as walking, biking and transit will be the most efficient and sustainable way to move people in our Urban Centres and responds with approaches that prioritize those modes. At the same time, these modes will only be successful if they are pleasant and safe to use, meaning transportation in Urban Centres is closely linked to the public realm with streets playing an important role as a public space. 

Both the City and development community have important roles in supporting the shift to more sustainable transportation options. New development must consider the transportation vision of the street through development process, identifying ways to enhance the walkability of the street, extend the City’s biking network or integrate a transit stop into their site plan. Meanwhile, the City must prioritize infrastructure investments that lead the transition to a low-carbon future and support the shift away from a car-oriented community.

Objective 4.15. Make Urban Centres safe and enjoyable for walking, biking, transit and shared mobility.

Policy 4.15.1. Transportation Infrastructure Priority.
Fund, design, construct and maintain transportation infrastructure to meet the needs of users and according to the following priority, recognizing that Urban Centre streets play an important role in supporting a range of transportation modes beyond cars:

  1. Active Transportation (Walking and Biking)
  2. Transit
  3. Shared Mobility
  4. Movement of Goods & Services
  5. High-Occupancy Vehicles (HOVs)
  6. Single-Occupancy Vehicles (SOVs)

Policy 4.15.2. Roadway Congestion.
Recognize and accept that Kelowna’s streets and parking will become busier as the City grows. Urban Centres will have the busiest streets, but also the highest potential to shift trips away from driving. For Urban Centres to thrive, walkable streets, protected bike routes, and improved transit service should be provided as growth and development occurs. 

Policy 4.15.3. Transit Service.
Implement a network of frequent transit routes to connect Urban Centres and major employment areas.

Policy 4.15.4. Transit Priority.
Utilize transit priority measures on key corridors to optimize transit travel time on the Frequent Transit Network.

Policy 4.15.5. Transit Infrastructure.
Ensure Frequent Transit Network routes are supported by key infrastructure (i.e. transit stops, bus pull out bays, bus shelters, benches, sidewalks, lighting, bike parking, accessibility features, or other transit amenities) to make taking transit more comfortable and enjoyable in Urban Centres.

Policy 4.15.6. Walkable Urban Centres.
Design streets and sidewalks to promote safety and comfort of pedestrians through enhanced public realm treatments, such as curb extensions, median refuge islands, street tree planting, adequate clear space for pedestrians, street furniture, curb-side parking and parkettes.

Policy 4.15.7. Pedestrian and Biking Connectivity.
With new developments, require dedication of on-site walking and biking paths as outlined in Maps 10.1 and 13.3 to provide links to adjacent parks, schools, transit stops, recreation facilities, employment areas and other activity areas.

Policy 4.15.8. Active Transportation Corridors.
Ensure Active Transportation Corridors are designed for cyclists and pedestrians of all ages and abilities in accordance with the objectives of the Pedestrian and Bicycle Master Plan.

Policy 4.15.9. Bicycle-Oriented Development.
Prioritize bicycle parking and end-of-trip facilities through site planning and design of new development to ensure biking is an attractive and convenient transportation option.  

Policy 4.15.10. Access Management.
Protect the functionality of Active Transportation Corridors,  transit supportive corridors and arterial roads by limiting direct driveway accesses. Ensure that new development takes vehicular access via laneways or secondary streets. Where that is not possible, encourage lot assemblies that reduce the total number of driveway accesses.

Objective 4.16. Develop a well-connected grid network of streets to shorten walking distances and improve traffic circulation.

Policy 4.16.1. Highway 97.
Recognize the role that Harvey Avenue plays as a higher capacity transit corridor and to facilitate the movement of goods and services for the region.

Policy 4.16.2. Highway Permeability.
Work with Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure to improve access across provincial highways for all modes to promote neighbourhood connectivity to and within Urban Centres. 

Policy 4.16.3. Transportation Networks.
Ensure transportation networks prioritize effective and efficient levels of transit service and convenient walking and biking connections between key employment areas and surrounding residential areas.

Policy 4.16.4. Urban Street Network.
Enhance street network connectivity and redundancy; strengthen people capacity to improve sustainable transportation and make it easier to access the surrounding major road network.

Policy 4.16.5. Public Pathways.
As redevelopment occurs, seek public pathways that would complement linear parks, multi-use pathways, parks, plazas, greenways or sidewalks to form continuous pedestrian and bicycle networks.

Policy 4.16.6. Laneway Access.
Maintain or enhance laneways as redevelopment occurs, to provide primary vehicle access to rear parking garages and commercial loading areas.

Policy 4.16.7. Safe Crossings.
Create accessible crossing opportunities for pedestrians and bicycles across collectors and arterials that serve all ages and abilities.

Objective 4.17. Create urban streets that are attractive to live, work and shop on.

Policy 4.17.1. Animated Pedestrian Realm.
Prioritize streetscape design elements and activities that animate the pedestrian realm in Urban Centres, particularly along high streets, retail streets and civic streets, as illustrated in Maps 4.2, 4.4, 4.6, 4.8 and 4.10.  Examples of these elements include event programming, temporary and mobile uses, and streetscape design elements that include, but are not limited to:

  • Street furniture;
  • Space for pedestrian movement and outdoor patios;
  • Pedestrian scale lighting;
  • Removal of visual clutter;
  • Street trees and planted boulevards; and
  • Placemaking features.

To further support an animated public realm, discourage the use of window bars and roll down panels on building facades that front such streets.

Policy 4.17.2. High Streets.
Animate the pedestrian realm by creating high streets and retail streets that are attractive destinations, as outlined in Maps 4.2, 4.4, 4.6, 4.8 and 4.10.  , attracting people and activity throughout the year.

Policy 4.17.3. Context Sensitive Streets.
Ensure arterial and collector road designs reflect their land use context as walkable urban places that serve as destinations and important public spaces.

Policy 4.17.4. Complete Streets.
Design streets to accommodate various combinations of transportation modes and uses, recognizing the intended role of a street in supporting key transportation networks (e.g. Active Transportation Corridor, Frequent Transit, Highway). Designs should also prioritize efficient movement of people over vehicles to optimize future network capacity.

Policy 4.17.5. Accessible Streets.
Streets should be accessible, with wheelchair ramps, accessible pedestrian signals at signalized intersections, tactile walking surface indicators, accessible curb ramps and other features to support all ages and abilities.

Policy 4.17.6. Shared Spaces.
Consider opportunities to pilot shared spaces in areas with high levels of pedestrian activity in Urban Centres.

Objective 4.18. Manage curb space to reflect a range of community benefit.

Policy 4.18.1. Parking Costs.
Optimize pricing of on-street parking in high demand areas to promote turnover and ensure availability. 

Policy 4.18.2. Shared Mobility Access.
Adapt management of curb space to improve access to shared mobility options and reflect changing community priorities (e.g. car share, micro, electric vehicle charging stations, ride-hailing and emerging mobility options).

Policy 4.18.3. Parking Spillover.
Introduce parking management strategies to reduce the impact of new multi-family residential parking on nearby low to medium density residential areas.

Policy 4.18.4. Road Capacity Increases.
Prioritize the removal of on street parking over land acquisition when exploring road capacity increases, with due consideration of the road’s character and function.

Objective 4.19. Adapt and respond to shifting long-term demand for off-street parking facilities.

Policy 4.19.1. Parking Relaxations.
Consider parking requirement relaxations, where the development provides a robust Transportation Demand Management (TDM) strategy (e.g. car share memberships, bicycle parking, co-working space) or includes occupants (rental housing tenure) that would contribute to lower rates of vehicle ownership.

Policy 4.19.2. Parking in Urban Centre Parks.
Limit the area used for automobile parking in Urban Centre parks, reflecting the constrained land area and greater mobility options in them.

Policy 4.19.3. Leverage Cash-in-Lieu.
Explore changes to cash-in-lieu parking programs to prioritize funding of sustainable transportation options over parking investments to support climate action and urban centre development. 

Policy 4.19.4. Parking Oversupply.
Discourage oversupplying parking in Urban Centres as it promotes car use and detracts from human scale neighbourhoods and pedestrian vibrancy.  

Policy 4.19.5. Parking Pays its Own Way.
Optimize off-street parking pricing at public parking facilities to recover the costs of constructing and operating parking facilities. 

Policy 4.19.6. Shared Parking Options.
Explore opportunities to facilitate access to untapped parking supply, recognizing residential and commercial uses often have parking demands that peak at different times of the day.

Policy 4.19.7. Public Electric Vehicle Charging Stations.
Provide public access to electric vehicle charging stations in public off-street parking areas.

Objective 4.20. Adapt and respond to emerging transportation technologies.

Policy 4.20.1. Shared Mobility Programs.
Continue to support pilot programs and partnerships to improve access to emerging on-demand mobility options that reduce greenhouse gases and enhance sustainable transportation options.

Policy 4.20.2. Emerging Transportation Technology.
Work with other levels of government and industry to leverage potential of emerging transportation technologies, such as self-driving or ride-hailing for example, to reduce congestion and greenhouse gases while supporting the transition away from a car centric culture.

Policy 4.20.3. Electric Vehicle Charging in New Development.
Integrate electric vehicle charging stations in off-street parking plans for new multi-family, institutional and commercial developments.

Culture

2040 OCP - Urban Centres - Pillars related to Culture

Culture embraces diversity, attracts and retains talent, fosters entrepreneurship and cultivates collaboration and partnerships – all elements important to building vibrant Urban Centres. Culture is on full display in the City’s downtown Cultural District, where most of City’s major cultural facilities will continue to be located. As Urban Centres grow, they should celebrate the cultural community and find ways to enhance its profile, particularly through the occupancies and design of the ground floor and public realm.

The City will prioritize the development of new cultural infrastructure or the redevelopment of already-existing cultural infrastructure in the Urban Centres in order to create a place where people want to live, work and play. Partnerships with the development community, creative sector and non-profit organizations will be integral to ensuring our Urban Centres remain vibrant, animated spaces.  

Objective 4.21. Develop Kelowna’s Cultural District as a primary destination for showcasing the cultural and artistic talents of the community.

Policy 4.21.1. Cultural District Directions.
Support the development of the Cultural District as outlined in the endorsed Civic Precinct Plan and Cultural Plan, as a centre for culture, entertainment and a catalyst for downtown revitalization.

Policy 4.21.2. Mixed-Use Cultural District.
Promote targeted mixed-use redevelopment in the Cultural District that will create a vibrant place for people to live, work and play.

Objective 4.22. Develop and maintain major cultural infrastructure to support vibrant Urban Centres.

Policy 4.22.1. Cultural Investments in Urban Centres.
Focus major investments in cultural infrastructure in Urban Centres.

Policy 4.22.2. Cultural Infrastructure.
Design a multi-functional and adaptable public realm to support and celebrate diversity through cultural programs, public events, performances, and public art installations.

Policy 4.22.3. Creative Industries.
Support measures to create affordable, flexible studio or workshop spaces to expand creative industries.

Policy 4.22.4. Live/Work Space.
Consider innovative ways to increase the supply of live/work space that is affordable for artists, and work/live space for industrial design and related activities.

Objective 4.23. Encourage artistic innovation and creative expression in the built environment across both the private and public sectors.

Policy 4.23.1. Public Art Promotion.
Promote public art that celebrates the culture and diversity of Kelowna while reflecting unique character and qualities within a specific Urban Centre. Seek opportunities to partner and collaborate with Westbank First Nation and Okanagan Indian Band on public art and placemaking initiatives that acknowledge and celebrate their traditional territory and cultural values.

Policy 4.23.2. Showcase Art in New Development.
Expand public art as an integral part of the public realm and new development within the Urban Centres. Encourage public art in conjunction with major public and private development.  

Policy 4.23.3. Alternative Artistic Expression.
Encourage opportunities to showcase alternative artistic expression through the animation of public spaces, such as busking and pianos in the park, for example.  Encourage art that invites people to engage in community building, celebration of diversity, and consideration of social issues.