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Community Approaches Final Hurdle to Protect the Naramata Bench

Community Approaches Final Hurdle to Protect Naramata Bench; Urges Residents to Attend Public Hearing


·      Penticton’s Official Community Plan (OCP) revisions to remove Spiller Road as designated growth area were recently recommended by the OCP Council appointed Task Force and supported by city staff.

·      Public engagement results show 80% support removing Spiller Rd. as a growth area. However, some councillors disagree with their constituents.


·      Residents urged to attend June 3 Public Hearing to ensure council acts according to the consensus of the community to protect the Naramata Bench from high density housing


May 31, 2024, Penticton BC -  The Society to Protect the Naramata Bench today announced that it is approaching the final hurdle in protecting the Naramata Bench from high density development and urged residents to attend the June 3 Public Hearing at Penticton City Hall.


A significant investment of time and resources from City Staff, the OCP taskforce and residents  led to a clear recommendation by the OCP taskforce, supported by City Staff,  that Spiller Rd. area is REMOVED from high density and commercial growth and lot sizes are 1 HECTARE or greater, regardless of municipal hookups.


However, there remains a risk that councillors will disregard the results of this investment of public money and instead allow small lot sizes with a ‘rural residential’ designation to be built on the Naramata Bench. This will allow for hundreds of homes to be built in a suburban style in the middle of Penticton’s prime agricultural and tourist zone.


“It’s clear that housing density on the Naramata Bench is neither practical, nor desired by the vast majority of residents,” said Gjoa Taylor from the Society to Preserve the Naramata Bench.  “We undoubtedly have a housing crisis but ruining agricultural land, forest, risking tourism and increasing emissions is not the way to solve this.”


Ms Taylor added,  “Council absolutely did the right thing in ensuring that detailed work and consultation took place before making a decision.  With clear recommendations from the OCP Taskforce, City Staff and support from 80% of residents, this work is now done, and the answer is clear that the Spiller Road area is not suitable for densified growth. We hope that a big show of support by the public at Monday’s hearing will be the final hurdle in protecting the benefits of the Naramata Bench for generations to come.”


For more information


Society for the Preservation of the Naramata Bench

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