Lake Country Council has deferred a controversial proposal to sell a strip of land at Gable Beach on Okanagan Lake to private landowners for 1.3 million dollars.
Dozens of area residents packed the council chamber last night armed with a more than 1500 name petition against the plan.
They fear that beach access would be lost.
Mayor James Baker hopes deferring the proposal will give time to clear the matter up.
“We’re selling an old road right-of-way that ran parallel to the beach but not the beach itself. Certainly not the Gable Road end where the park is.”
Most of the money from the sale would go towards reducing Kelowna’s interest in the Okanagan Rail Trail.
Kelowna paid for part of Lake Country’s purchase of the rail trail and the interest ion that needs to be paid back.
The opponents of the plan worry that new owners of the land would expand the property and build private docks that would block the beach.
James Baker says that wouldn’t happen.
“That is the provincial government has the say whether they will lease the foreshore for a dock. If they do, they have to be sure that it’s built that it doesn’t impede anybody’s passage.”
Baker says the District wouldn’t approve a permit for a dock if it was going to block the beach.
He says a meeting will be held with the Carr’s Landing residents group to try to clear up the matter.
The Mayor is not ruling out going another route.
” We still then have to decide whether we want to close that unbuilt road and add it to the properties which gives us some income to more access in more areas in our community.”
Baker says no date has been set for the matter to come back before council