Plans to urbanize Penticton
Imagine that you had taken your nest egg and purchased a lovely condo with a beautiful view.
You had checked the zoning law, official community plan and city hall and were assured that your view would not be blocked. So you settled into your retirement home to enjoy your peaceful quiet life.
Fast forward a few years. Imagine that the city has, piece by piece, broken the zoning laws, broken the Official Community Plan and broken the word of city hall. They have put forward a plan for towers blocking your view. Imagine the sense of betrayal after you politely sent letters, petitions, a committee report suggesting less dense alternatives for housing (low income town homes next to the school) and attended the public hearing with hundreds of others expressing their negative concerns.
Imagine you woke up the next morning and found the city had sold your views to another developer. Imagine living in a construction zone with piles of dirt and supplies, dust blowing into your condo, constant noise of beeping, machines, pounding, vibrations shaking the building, trucks blocking your view as you try to exit onto the street. Imagine this goes on all day long seven days a week. Imagine not being able to sleep at night because of anger and a sense of betrayal — and a strong sense of unease about what is coming next. Your peaceful life has been destroyed. In the end your view will be a ticky tacky tower and the value of your condo will be decreased. Imagine if this happened to you. How would you feel?
If the city continues with its plan to urbanize Penticton, this will happen to more and more people. This urbanization needs to stop. It is not only environmentally unsustainable but also detrimental to the quality of life of a moderate sized rural community.
As the Parks and Rec Planning Committee argued over wording of their wonderful report, developers are buying up every square inch of the valley with a view to high density towers. We can have progress and moderate levels of development without destroying the lives of the people already living in the community.
The next election will determine the future direction of Penticton. We need to support councilors who will have consideration for the people who already live in this community and who don’t cater to money interests. There is a middle way.