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BRITISH COLUMBIA MEDIA NEWSWIRE » City News
     
   
     
 
 
 
         
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City News News and Events

Osoyoos B.C. Resort Municipality Initiative - New Tourism Development Projects

 osoyoos_welcome.jpg

Under the B.C. Resort Municipality Initiative agreement, signed in Osoyoos on March 17, 2008, it is estimated that Osoyoos and area will receive $1 million over five years. Funds will be used by the Town of Osoyoos through its Tourism and Economic Development office at Destination Osoyoos to launch seven major new projects to enhance the area’s growing tourism industry and support a greener, healthier environment for residents and visitors alike.

NEW RESORT INITIATIVES PLANNED

Multi-use trail system

A network of new multi-use trails will connect the downtown and lakefront of Osoyoos with outlaying natural areas and eventually link up with trails running between Osoyoos and other South Okanagan communities. Interpretive signage and scenic viewpoints will provide information on the area’s unique desert environment, local First Nations culture, and heritage. It is expected that the expanded trail network will create many new agri-tourism, hiking and cycle tourism opportunities.

Create affordable tourism employee housing

The Town of Osoyoos has recognized in its Official Community Plan that the area’s ongoing sustainability depends on being able to retain and attract young working families. Following the completion of an affordable tourism employee housing strategy, funding will be directed toward a specific housing project.

Improve route and traffic signage

A comprehensive and consistent signage program will strengthen Osoyoos’ Image and complement work already underway on beautification within the community. The program aims to enhance the overall visitor experience and encourage a larger percentage of drive-through traffic to stop for a day-trip or overnight visit. It is hoped that this will lead to increased business for merchants, restaurants, hotels and other tourism operators.

Creation of a public art program to help attract foot traffic to tour art projects

In an endeavour to support the local arts sector, Destination Osoyoos will work in partnership with the Osoyoos and District Arts Council to create a new Art in the Park festival. The annual art event will leave a legacy of new public art in the community. Establishing this initiative in the revitalized waterfront area/Spirit Square will strengthen the area’s appeal as a key community and visitor gathering place.

Support an energy efficient airport shuttle between Osoyoos and the Kelowna and Penticton airports

Destination Osoyoos will explore opportunities to partner with a private sector transportation operator on an airport shuttle service between Osoyoos and the Kelowna and Penticton airports. A green technology-based vehicle would be used. The project would have the added advantage of reducing potential greenhouse emissions by cutting down on the number of rental vehicles that would otherwise be used by tourists.

Purchase a beach cleaner based on green technology

Following an assessment of the best green beach cleaning technology available in the marketplace, the Town of Osoyoos will lease to purchase a beach cleaner to cleanse the beaches regularly and to remove milfoil on the beach areas, Beach cleaning is critical in keeping Osoyoos beaches in pristine condition and protecting the natural environment, contributing to the quality of life of local residents and the overall health of the local tourism industry.

March 17th, 2008

Land Development Agreement Signing

The Town of Osoyoos and the Province of British Columbia have entered into a Land Development Agreement which will see the seven industrial lots located adjacent to the Osoyoos Airport developed and sold. The Agreement was officially signed by (Ministry Officials) and Mayor Slater in Osoyoos today.

The Agreement comprises a partnership between the Town of Osoyoos and the Province of British Columbia (represented by the Integrated Land Management Bureau, Ministry of Agriculture and Lands). The Agreement includes cost sharing of the administrative and servicing requirements on the property, with a profit sharing component. It is anticipated that the infrastructure development and subsequent sale of the properties will commence soon. The Town of Osoyoos, through Destination Osoyoos, is also working on developing terminal services, fuel operating and hanger services at the Osoyoos Airport.

Development of these lands will diversify the local economy and meet the growing need for industrial property in this thriving community. The Town also anticipates that the new lots will increase business opportunities and result in the creation of additional employment prospects. The Agreement has been some years in the making, and Osoyoos Town Council are thrilled to have this now finalized. The partnership fulfills the municipality’s primary goal of seeing growth in manufacturing businesses and industries in Osoyoos.

March 11th, 2008



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