A render of the proposed lighthouse at Goats Peak Winery. (Contributed)

A render of the proposed lighthouse at Goats Peak Winery. (Contributed)

Proposed 115-foot lighthouse at West Kelowna winery turning heads

If approved, this would serve as West Kelowna’s tallest building

A proposal to erect a 35 meter (115-foot) lighthouse at a West Kelowna winery is turning heads.

If approved, this would serve as the city’s tallest building. In order to be approved, West Kelowna council would have to significantly raise the current building height limit from 15.0 meters (49.2 feet).

The lighthouse would serve as a wine tasting and production facility at Goats Peak Winery, located at 2789 Highway 97 South.

The winery was recently purchased in 2019 by Monette Farms, with the intent to develop into a 12-acre estate vineyard and winery. By 2025 they expect to be producing 8,000 cases of wine annually. On-site they will plant Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir and Gamay grapes.

The lighthouse would stand 25 feet taller than the Mission Hill Winery bell tower, a familiar landmark in West Kelowna.

When the matter came before West Kelowna council Tuesday (Oct. 13), winery owners explained in their application they believe the building’s “unique theme and height” will add to the development of the community and create a destination for tourists to visit.

The winery’s vision is to make the Westside Wine Trail and West Kelowna, “a world destination for wine tourism.”

“This proposed winery is intended to be a beacon for tourism and local pride, and is inspired by other famous towers and iconic lighthouses,” reads the report in council.

The lighthouse would be visible from the highway, something winery owners believe would be an ‘attractive feature’ on the landscape.

Light pollution was noted by City of West Kelowna planner, Hailey Rilkoff, as a potential issue that would need to be worked around.

West Kelowna’s Agricultural Advisory Committee (AAC) supported the construction of the project, only if the first five acres of land are planted before construction.

The Ministry of Agriculture noted potential impacts to future residential neighbours in terms of noise, and may also impact the use of helicopters in operation of a cherry orchard (to the north and east) of the farm.

Transport Canada did not note any navigational concerns in regards to the Kelowna Airport, however, said this should also be submitted to NAV Canada for their consideration, before issuing a building permit.

Rilkoff recommended Council approve the proposed variance application and support the project, noting the proposed building is not anticipated to create significant negative impacts.

Some councillors expressed the need to hear more about the project before forming an opinion on it. Some recommended a deferral. Others expressed extreme opposition to the project.

“This commercial enterprise, I wish them all the best with their business, but to me, it would be a deterrent,” said coun. Carol Zanon, adding that she would want to see something in line with the City’s Official Community Plan, as well as the public’s interests.

Several councillors expressed the need to hear from the public before moving the project forward.

Coun. Jayson Zilkie admitted all councillors were struggling with the height variance, adding that it’s hard to make a decision based on the renderings which he referred to as low quality.

He compared this proposal to the Mission Hill bell tower, which he said was relatively meaningless in the early 2000s, but become iconic to the community over time.

Coun. Stephen Johnson said he wanted to ensure nearby farms were not impacted, adding he wrestles with the overall design and would like the developer to come forward with more detail and specificity.

Coun. Jason Friesen said he agrees with coun. Zanon in that lighthouses doesn’t belong in West Kelowna, however, agreed with Zilkie in that it may become iconic over time.

He approved of the non-farm-use application and height variance.

Council ultimately voted to postpone, not deny the issuance of a development variance permit. The lighthouse project is expected to return to council at a later date.

READ MORE: Guilty plea expected this morning in Penticton quadruple murder

READ MORE: Crash claims life of 60-year-old Okanagan man, RCMP investigating

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


 

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

City of West Kelowna

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

Just Posted

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Interior Health reports 18 COVID-19 cases, highest daily count since July

The total of COVID-19 cases in the region is now at 662

(Big White Ski Resort photo)
Big White receives 21 cm of snow in 24 hours

Resort’s snow base 41 cm deep, one month until opening day

A Kelowna clinic decided to immunize their patients in a drive-thru flu clinic earlier this month. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
Interior Health anticipates increase in flu vaccinations this season

Some 300,000 doses of flu vaccine ready for distribution across Southern Interior

District of Lake Country Council approved Lightbox Enterprises Ltd. for a non-medical cannabis retail license Monday, Oct. 20, 2020. (Black Press Media File).
Council greenlights Lake Country’s second cannabis store

Council voted 4-3 to approve Dutch Love Cannabis at Oct. 20 meeting

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

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

The deer were allegedly shot within Princeton town limits, late at night. Black Press File Photo.
Armed man, in full camouflage, allegedly shoots deer in downtown Princeton

‘The list of charges goes on and on,’ said RCMP Sgt. Rob Hughes

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Chastity Davis-Alphonse took the time to vote on Oct. 21. B.C’s general Election Day is Saturday, Oct. 24. (Chastity Davis-Alphonse Facebook photo)
B.C. reconciliation advocate encourages Indigenous women to vote in provincial election

Through the power of voice and education Chastity Davis-Alphonse is hopeful for change

White Rock RCMP Staff Sgt. Kale Pauls has released a report on mental health and policing in the city. (File photos)
White Rock’s top cop wants to bill local health authority for lengthy mental-health calls

‘Suggestion’ included in nine-page review calling for ‘robust’ support for healthcare-led response

A Le Chateau retail store is shown in Montreal on Wednesday July 13, 2016. Le Chateau Inc. says it is seeking court protection from creditors under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act to allow it to liquidate its assets and wind down its operations.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Clothing retailer Le Chateau plans to close its doors, files for CCAA protection

Le Chateau said it intends to remain fully operational as it liquidates its 123 stores

Most Read