Kelowna council cautiously supports winery’s culinary college vision

‘The ALC should be aware we have concerns and it’s not a slam dunk’

Kelowna city council has offered its support to the vision behind an ambitious culinary college at a Southwest Mission winery despite several concerns over the potential execution.

The “Culinary College for Humanity” is proposed on Summerhill Pyramid Winery land by its proprietor Stephen Cipes.

Council chose on Monday (March 22), by a 5-3 vote to send the project to the Agricultural Land Commission (ALC) for consideration, a necessity due to the school’s proposed location on land reserved for agricultural use. If the ALC approves the non-farm use, the application will come back to council for a development permit. Councillors Luke Stack, Mohini Singh and Ryan Donn voted against the endorsement, with Stack saying council needed to show the ALC it didn’t forward the matter to them without concern.

“The ALC should be aware we have concerns and it’s not a slam dunk,” said Stack.

Previously, council deferred its decision on the school, citing the need to hear more from Cipes on the facility’s use. Councillors said they feared the school might end up being used as a “hotel in a vineyard.”

A concept rendering of the proposed "Culinary College for Humanity." (Contributed)

Cipes provided council further insight into his lofty plans on Monday, while taking questions from council alongside a panel of consultants, with Mayor Colin Basran calling it the “most eclectic” he’d ever seen. Cipes and his consultants assured council those staying at the school would have to be enrolled in classes. People would have to enroll in classes then book their accommodations around that.

Cipes admitted that agri-tourism is a large aspect of their business via short-stay classes ranging from a couple of days to a couple of weeks. The school is also planning to offer long-term classes in the six- to eight-month range and is working to secure an accredited program via the Canadian Culinary Institute. His vision is to churn out chefs who will place high importance on the ethical sourcing of food, something he says is currently lacking in the culinary industry.

Much of council’s concerns stemmed from the scale of the proposed facility. Currently, the school is planned to offer 150 beds in both rooms and dorm-style accommodations in an eight-floor 35,000-square-foot building.

Though council’s support for the project came with hesitancy, if the ALC approves it, councillors will again have the chance to debate the appropriateness of the school’s scale during development permit deliberations.

READ MORE: Kelowna waterfront park makeover to include new paddle centre

READ MORE: Higher density appeals to Rutland business core

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email: michael.rodriguez@kelownacapnews.com


@michaelrdrguez
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

City of Kelowna

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(ITV photo)
COLUMN: Lessons from Lockdown: Season 5 is easily Love Island’s best

Let’s be honest, not all of our time spent in lockdown is productive, and that’s OK

Waterfront owners on Kalamalka Lake might want to check their docks, as one was spotted floating around the Oyama end of the lake Thursday, April 22. (Nick Clements photo)
‘Anyone lose a dock?’ in Vernon or Lake Country

Wooden structure spotted at south end of Kalamalka Lake

Vernon Christian School had its first COVID-19 exposure in April 2021. (VCS photo)
Silver Star, Vernon Christian schools latest in COVID-19 exposures

Clarence Fulton and VSS also reporting potential exposures

A screen capture from Chris “Sky” Saccoccia’s Twitch live stream of his rally in Kelowna’s Stuart Park on April 22, 2021. (therealchrisskytv/Twitch.tv)
Anti-mask activist Chris Sky descends on Kelowna, incites violation of COVID-19 health orders

The appearance is part of Chris “Sky” Saccoccia’s ‘Freedom Convoy’ that is currently travelling cross-country

Kimberley case counts not at the point for 18 years and older community vaccination, says Interior Health. (File photo)
Many factors considered for smaller community-wide vaccination: Interior Health

East Kootenay resort town’s COVID-19 situation not at the point of community-wide vaccination, say officials

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and United States President Joe Biden smile as they say farewell following a virtual joint statement in Ottawa, Tuesday, February 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau pledges to cut emissions by 40% to 45% by 2030, short of U.S. goal

Trudeau announced target during a virtual climate summit convened by U.S. President Joe Biden

BC Wildfire Service
Small wildfire ignites in the Shuswap

The blaze is about 10 km east of the Squilax Bridge

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Gavel (Courtesy photo)
EDITORIAL: High marks for Canada’s democratic process

Accusations of widespread corruption do not hold up

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will issue an apology for Canada’s treatment of Itaian-Canadians during the Second World War. (CPAC)
COLUMN: Apologizing for an uncomfortable wartime decision

Canada’s government will apologize for its treatment of Italian-Canadians during the Second World War

Vernon RCMP are seeking the public’s help in identifying a man who allegedly pointed a firearm at two people outside a downtown business Saturday, April 10, 2021. (Contributed)
Man who brandished firearm in downtown Vernon sought by police

Video surveillance image shows man pointing what investigators believe to be a handgun April 10

MLA Shirley Bond, right, answers questions during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on February 19, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Former B.C. gaming minister says she wasn’t told directly about dirty cash flowing to casinos

Shirley Bond said Thursday civil forfeiture, gang violence and gambling addiction were also major concerns in 2011

RauDZ pop-up patio located on Pandosy Street in front of The Okanagan Table. (Contributed: Audrey Surrao)
Kelowna restaurant gets creative to adjust to new health orders

The owners of RauDZ Regional Table open ‘pop-up patio’ to adjust to health order banning indoor dining

Most Read