Penticton liquor store left in limbo

Owner of Three Gables Liquor Store fighting B.C. Liquor Control and Licensing Board decision against moving his store out of the downtown

A Penticton businessman is not giving up the fight to move his licence to operate a liquor store out of downtown.

Three Gables Liquor Store owner Malvindar Randhawa petitioned the City of Penticton for a second letter of support last month, and has now engaged a lawyer to start formal proceedings to request the B.C. Liquor Control and Licensing Branch reconsider its decision to deny his move.

“I am still moving, I am still going to try. Now they denied me and they don’t want to reconsider,” said Randhawa, who added he has tried contacting many levels of the LCLB administration. “Every time I ask a question that they don’t like, I don’t get any response from them.”

A year ago, Randhawa began the process of trying to move his liquor store licence from Martin Street in downtown Penticton — where there is a competing shop across the street — to another property owned by his family at Calgary and Fairfield, where he planned to construct a new residential/commercial development.

Despite support from the city, the application was turned down, primarily because the new location would be within one kilometre of the Government Street Liquor outlet, which strongly opposed the move. Randhawa argues that according to the LCLB, they are only 60 metres short of the required distance. Even then, said Randhawa, that is the distance measured “as the crow flies.” The actual distance by road is 1.2 kilometres.

Randhawa’s request for a second letter received strong support from some councillors and the mayor.

Mayor Dan Ashton supported the Randhawa move as beneficial for downtown as a whole, a point Randhawa also made when asking for council’s support.

“Staff in Victoria has no real concept of what is happening in our city and what will be best for us,” said Randhawa in his request. “I am putting forth an answer to most of the problems downtown. I hope all concerned will take the time to seriously assess the situation and use their better judgment to come up with a solution.”

“There have been issues in regard to the amount of liquor available in the downtown core. This may solve an issue for us in more ways than one,” said Ashton, noting the city’s preference not to have two liquor stores on the same block. However, he also noted that another decision by the LCLB might be affecting the Randhawa decision.

“I have been told that there has been an approval of another liquor store at Fairview and Industrial, so that may come into play,” said Ashton. “I think our liquor laws are archaic. I don’t quite understand the method to their madness.”

A liquor store at that location would be very close to an existing outlet at Cherry Lane shopping centre.

“We were trying to map it the other day, it is very close, it is 0.97, 0.98 of a kilometre, where you point the arrow into Cherry Lane,” said Randhawa, who is concerned there may be preferential treatment, since, like his, this application is for the move of a licence. In this case, it is for the Bubblee’s outlet, which was closed when Slack Alice’s burned down last year.

The Fairview and Industrial store would only be about 0.7 km from Randhawa’s proposed location, but he isn’t concerned about the competition.

“No one is a kilometre apart, we don’t have a kilometre area in the city to be apart with nine private liquor stores,” said Randhawa. “Let there be competition between me and him. Everybody else is in competition, what’s wrong with that?”


Just Posted

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 Penticton-area men charged with Kamloops brothers’ double homicide

Brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May in Naramata

(File photo)
Penticton not holding Canada Day activities out of respect for Indigenous people

Cities across B.C. are cancelling the holiday after an increased spotlight on Canada’s dark history

Fruit farmers in the Okanagan and Creston valleys are in desperate need of cherry harvesters amid COVID-19 work shortages. (Photo: Unsplash/Abigail Miller)
‘Desperate’ need for workers at Okanagan cherry farms

Fruit farmers are worried they’ll have to abandon crops due to COVID-19 work shortages

JAK's Liquor Store in Penticton will be donating 10 per cent of its sales on Saturday, June 19, to the Penticton Salvation Army Food Bank. (Photo from
Stock up your liquor cabinet and support the Penticton food bank

Jak’s beer and wine store is donating a portion of sales to local food banks Saturday

The illegal open fire above Naramata continues to smoke on Friday, June 18. The fire was left to burn itself out by BC Wildfire. (Monique Tamminga - Western News)
Illegal open burn in Naramata will be left to smoke

BC Wildfire could not confirm whether the property owner had been fined

A small pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass by close to shore in Campbell River June 16, 2021. Still capture from video courtesy of Kimberly Hart
VIDEO: Dolphin sunset captured from Vancouver Island shore

Spectacular setting for view of travelling pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins

Earls On Top at 211 Bernard Avenue in Kelowna. (Google Maps photo)
Downtown Kelowna’s Earls ordered closed after COVID-19 transmission

Earls on Top on Bernard Avenue will be closed from June 18 to June 27

A motorycle crash has been reported on Westside Road. (Google Maps)
UPDATE: Westside Road reopened following motorcycle crash near Vernon

AIM Roads advises drivers to expect delays due to congestion

Dereck Donald Sears. (Contributed/Crimestoppers)
Murder charge laid in relation to suspicious Kelowna death

Dereck Donald Sears is charged with second-degree murder in the death of Darren Middleton

Albert Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney unveil an opening sign after speaking about the Open for Summer Plan and next steps in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta 1st province in Canada to lift all COVID-19 public health restrictions

70.2% of eligible citizens 12 and older in the province have received a dose of the vaccine

Fraser Health registered nurse Ramn Manan draws a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe at a walk-up vaccination clinic at Bear Creek Park, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, May 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Honour our fathers’ with COVID-19 vaccine protection, B.C. urges

109 new cases Friday, 75 per cent of 12 and up immunized

(Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Trutch Avenue in Chilliwack to be renamed to remove racist taint

New name to have Indigenous significance as Chilliwack takes new step toward reconciliation

Most Read