A truck leaves The Bow, a development on Penticton Indian Band land that is doing work to restore historical damage to the ecologically sensitive area, according to Friends of the Oxbow. Dustin Godfrey/Western News

PIB-area development improving ecologically sensitive area

The Bow on Penticton Indian Band land is working to repair historic wear and tear on a nearby oxbow

As finished houses begin to arrive at a local housing project, the developers have been working to not only maintain the surrounding oxbow but to repair some of its wear and tear from years past.

The Bow, a development on Penticton Indian Band land just on the east side of the Channel Parkway on Warren Avenue, already has a number of the 46 houses in place. Though prices haven’t been officially announced, developers are touting the project as more affordable because of the modular-style construction of the houses.

With the development working in an ecologically sensitive area, one of Penticton’s oxbows, the development has raised some concerns. But both the City of Penticton and Friends of the Oxbow said they have been seeing positive work around the natural area from the developers.

In part, the project is bound by provincial regulations on riparian areas, including the oxbows in the Penticton area, to protect the area as they develop.

“We were required to have certain setbacks from the oxbow, and we have to do a bunch of different exercises. … We had to track six female turtles,” Drew Barnes with the Warren Avenue Development Corporation said. “We also have to do vegetation restoration. And we also have to monitor plants, so we have to plant 300,000 plants, probably.”

Those plants will need to be monitored over the next couple of years to make sure they are properly taking to the soil. They will also have to implement a one-way turtle fence to keep turtles and snakes out of the development.

“We’re also going to be putting in some educational signage showing what species are out there, reptiles, birds, all that kind of stuff,” Barnes said.

Some of those include the six western painted turtles the developers had to track, which is an at-risk species.

All that work has involved consultations with various environmental engineers, including Columbia Environmental located on the Penticton Indian Band, as well as local Gordon Mackinnon of Wildrock Environmental Services.

“We took a bit of soils out of the oxbow. They were two bodies of water with a collapsed culvert in between them,” Barnes said. “Now they’re one body of water, so we took that silt out.”

When the developers took out trees, they also had some more strict regulations to work with, regarding migratory birds.

Barnes added that the Friends of the Oxbows had a look at the plan, and had their own input on the project, as well.

“We’ve been in contact with them all along. What they are doing is in accordance with the approved plan,” said Ray Halladay with Friends of the Oxbows.

“And a good part of that plan relating to the oxbows is just excellent, is in the process they will, in fact, be repairing what damage had been done there historically, some of it back in the time of the paddlewheelers. So they’re going to resculpt some of the bank.”

The development has a 148-year lease with the Penticton Indian Band to use the land, which Barnes said was the longest in the band’s history. It is also the first development in the area to be on band land while receiving servicing for utilities from the City of Penticton.

So while the band will collect taxes from the development for the lease, city hall will collect development cost charges and utility fees as part of the servicing agreement.

Two to four houses are coming from Moduline in Penticton per month, and then being put in place at the development, with a launch date of May 5.

Report a typo or send us your tips, photos and video.

Dustin Godfrey | Reporter


Send Dustin an email.
Like the Western News on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Similkameen orchardists file lawsuit over ancestral remains site

Lawsuit alleges individuals entered the property by force

Okanagan Vinyl Fest spins into Penticton

Fundraiser for Peach City Radio features albums from vendors all over the province

Santa and the Okanagan Motorcycle Riders Association brave the rain for 32nd annual Toy Run

The riders gathered up donations for the St. Vincent De Paul Society in Penticton.

Kelowna classroom where child allegedly overdosed re-opens after cleaning

An 8-year-old was unresponsive and unable to walk after ingesting an unknown substance at school.

Okanagan Great Ogogogo Bathtub Race beats fundraising goal

Total money raised from the race series is $124,500

VIDEO: Liberals make child care pledge, Greens unveil platform on Day 6 of campaign

Green party leader Elizabeth May unveils her party’s platform in Toronto

Decision on Sagmoen voir dire expected today

Media outlets to tackle publication ban in Vernon courts

National weather forecasters predict average fall, cold winter

The Weather Network says precipitation will about average in most parts of Canada

Morning Start: Do you know who first played the Joker?

Your morning start for Monday, September 16.

Two dead, two in critical condition in highway crash near Campbell River

Highway 19 reopened Sunday night after it was closed in both directions

VIDEO: Vancouver Island mayor details emergency response after fatal bus crash

Sharie Minions says she is ‘appalled’ by condition of road where bus crashed

Federal party leaders address gun violence after weekend shooting near Toronto

One teen was killed and five people injured in the shooting

Video: Rain doesn’t deter Terry Fox runners in Salmon Arm

Dozens showed up to continue the Canadian icon’s marathon of hope.

Athlete of the Week: William Buttar

Though he is little, William Buttar is fierce as he makes his introduction into the sporting world

Most Read