British Columbia

Kelowna, B.C., waterfront park getting a facelift

People in Kelowna, B.C., are getting a look at the redesign plan for Kerry Park, the waterfront park at foot of the city's main street. The plan is being presented to city council Monday.

'Kerry Park is very much the living room of the city,' says project manager

Renovations at Kelowna's Kerry Park are not expected to begin until 2019. (City of Kelowna)

Kelowna's waterfront park at the foot of the city's main street is getting a facelift which will include a redesigned performance stage, an upgraded promenade and the relocation of the popular Ogopogo statue.

On Monday afternoon city council will get a look at the Kerry Park redesign project plan.

Major changes include renovating the fountain at Kelowna's iconic Sails sculpture, wider public walkways and a reorientation of the park's performance stage that hosts musicians and performers in the summer.

"Kelowna's downtown is densifying, urbanizing and becoming more modern," said project manager Andrew Gibbs.

"The goal here is to update the park to meet those future demands and also improve the ability to do things like events and to accommodate more people."

'Living room of the city'

A concrete parking lot in the park will be turned into green space. 

The performance stage will be reorientated, and more seating will be put in for summer concerts, said Gibbs.

"[Kerry Park] is very much the living room of the city," he said.

"Right now there is not a lot of seating or gathering opportunities in the park so we are trying, as part of the design, to build that into the park for its next generation."

Deck chairs will be added to park's waterfront promenade.

The walkway along the waterfront will be widened and redesigned, Gibbs said.

"It will be much more of a stroll. Much more generous and quite a bit more friendly to use," he said.

"There will be more room for pedestrians and bicyclists through there, which there isn't today."

Kelowna's beloved Ogopogo statue will be moved to a more photogenic location in Kerry Park on the redesigned promenade. (Wikipedia)

Ogopogo heading to promenade

Kelowna's beloved Ogopogo statue will also be moved from its location next to the Sails statue onto the promenade, in a much more photogenic location, said Gibbs.

The park beautification project is the latest in a series of upgrades to Kelowna's waterfront public spaces.

Construction is not expected to start until 2019 and will depend on two other proposed projects in the area — a 24-storey hotel and the new Tourism Kelowna building.