British Columbia

'Wine village' set to break ground in the Okanagan

The unique site, located near Oliver, B.C., will be a place for 16 small producers to produce and share their wine in one spot.

Each of the 16 wine producers in the village will have their own space to produce and share wine

A mock-up of what the District Wine Village could look like. (Submitted by District Wine Village)

A project to create a "wine village" — which its creators call Canada's first — is set to break ground in B.C.'s South Okanagan next spring. 

The District Wine Village, located at the north end of Oliver, B.C., on land leased from the Osoyoos Indian Band, will group 16 artisan wine producers together in a large-scale "village" where each producer will have their own individual space but have access to shared resources.

There will be tasting rooms, kitchens and a 600-person entertainment centre to host special events.

The project is the brainchild of Penticton, B.C.-based Greyback Construction.

Michael Daley, the director of operations for the District Wine Village, says the "wine village" is a new phenomenon that's cropping up across the wine regions around the world.

"I use the term, it's kind of a Disneyland for adults," he said, laughing.

Daley says the first phase includes 16 buildings including a brewery, with an option for a distillery or a cidery in the future. The buildings will not be storefronts, but actually fully functional production sites. 

He says the site is ideal for growers who think they might not attract enough traffic to their winery, or up-and-coming winemakers and other small-batch craft producers and artisans. 

"It's all about the little guy," he said. 

Construction is set to begin in the spring of 2020.

With files from Daybreak South

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