Electoral Area E OCP Review

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The Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS) is reviewing and updating the Electoral Area E Official Community Plan (OCP). The OCP guides how your community grows and changes over the next 20-25 years.




Round 3 of the community survey is now complete. Stay tuned for the final report and presentation.


What’s new?

See the latest updates on the OCP here:


Meeting Recordings


Survey Results


Information


What is an Official Community Plan?

An official community plan (OCP) provides guidance and policies on a broad range of topics including land‐use, transportation, housing, parks, and infrastructure. OCPs also designate land for specific purposes like commercial office, retail, residential, park, and industrial uses.

Collectively, the policies and land use map are used by the Regional Board, Regional District staff, other agencies, and the community to guide decisions about future investment in your community.

OCPs are developed through public consultation and professional planning practices. Once drafted, an OCP must be adopted by the Regional District Board as an official bylaw.


Background

The existing OCP was first adopted in 2006 and readopted in 2008. The last OCP review started this time 17 years ago!

Electoral Area E consists of Naramata Village and the surrounding rural area along the benches. Most of Area E beyond the Kettle Valley Rail (KVR) is Crown Land and Parks.

Electoral Area E


OCP Project Timeline

Work on the Area E OCP began in the fall and will continue throughout 2022. The final OCP Bylaw is expected to be complete by the end of 2022.


The OCP will take place in four phases. We are currently in Phase 2.

  • Phase 1 – Inventory
  • Phase 2 – Analysis
  • Phase 3 – Synthesis
  • Phase 4 – Policy

Your input will be important in the first three stages of the process to get the best policy document for the formal adoption process.


Here are some ways you and your neighbours can participate:

Phase 1:

  • Ask a question Online – OPEN NOW (see below)
  • Survey Round 1 – Complete

Phase 2:

  • Survey Round 2 – Complete
  • Public Information Meeting #1 – Complete
  • Survey Round 3 – Complete
  • Open House #1 – Complete
  • Public Information Meeting #2 – Survey 3 results - Late May/early June

Phase 3:

  • Open House #2 – mid-June 2022
  • Public Information Meeting – September 2022 (TBC)

Phase 4:

  • Public Hearing – October/November 2022 (TBC)

NOTE: Due to provincial health guidelines, in-person meetings and events will be scheduled in accordance with current guidelines.


Get Involved!

The Regional District wants to hear from you. Participate using the tools below. Check back often for updates and new activities. Sign up to get project alerts and updates by using the "Stay Informed" box on the right hand panel.

The Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS) is reviewing and updating the Electoral Area E Official Community Plan (OCP). The OCP guides how your community grows and changes over the next 20-25 years.




Round 3 of the community survey is now complete. Stay tuned for the final report and presentation.


What’s new?

See the latest updates on the OCP here:


Meeting Recordings


Survey Results


Information


What is an Official Community Plan?

An official community plan (OCP) provides guidance and policies on a broad range of topics including land‐use, transportation, housing, parks, and infrastructure. OCPs also designate land for specific purposes like commercial office, retail, residential, park, and industrial uses.

Collectively, the policies and land use map are used by the Regional Board, Regional District staff, other agencies, and the community to guide decisions about future investment in your community.

OCPs are developed through public consultation and professional planning practices. Once drafted, an OCP must be adopted by the Regional District Board as an official bylaw.


Background

The existing OCP was first adopted in 2006 and readopted in 2008. The last OCP review started this time 17 years ago!

Electoral Area E consists of Naramata Village and the surrounding rural area along the benches. Most of Area E beyond the Kettle Valley Rail (KVR) is Crown Land and Parks.

Electoral Area E


OCP Project Timeline

Work on the Area E OCP began in the fall and will continue throughout 2022. The final OCP Bylaw is expected to be complete by the end of 2022.


The OCP will take place in four phases. We are currently in Phase 2.

  • Phase 1 – Inventory
  • Phase 2 – Analysis
  • Phase 3 – Synthesis
  • Phase 4 – Policy

Your input will be important in the first three stages of the process to get the best policy document for the formal adoption process.


Here are some ways you and your neighbours can participate:

Phase 1:

  • Ask a question Online – OPEN NOW (see below)
  • Survey Round 1 – Complete

Phase 2:

  • Survey Round 2 – Complete
  • Public Information Meeting #1 – Complete
  • Survey Round 3 – Complete
  • Open House #1 – Complete
  • Public Information Meeting #2 – Survey 3 results - Late May/early June

Phase 3:

  • Open House #2 – mid-June 2022
  • Public Information Meeting – September 2022 (TBC)

Phase 4:

  • Public Hearing – October/November 2022 (TBC)

NOTE: Due to provincial health guidelines, in-person meetings and events will be scheduled in accordance with current guidelines.


Get Involved!

The Regional District wants to hear from you. Participate using the tools below. Check back often for updates and new activities. Sign up to get project alerts and updates by using the "Stay Informed" box on the right hand panel.

Ask your questions

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    Should I complete the survey if I'm not living in area E but close to it?

    WimLaven asked 10 days ago

    Anyone with interest in Area E, such as living nearby, may participate in the survey. The survey is now closed, however there will be more community engagement further into the process. You are welcome to send any questions or comments here or to the project team. 

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    When will we see better sidewalks and street lighting for safety and mobility?

    Mike McConnell asked 3 months ago

    Sidewalks and streetlighting are related to infrastructure policies in the OCP. We're at the point in the process where we're trying to understand how much of the community wants improved infrastructure v. how much of the community does not want the kinds of infrastructure that may make Naramata feel more urban. 

    Streetlights are the responsibility of the RDOS within the Naramata Street Lighting Service Area and are installed and operated by Fortis BC. The OCP does define the future goals for how many and where future street lighting would go.

    Sidewalks and all related road infrastructure are the responsibility of the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure. The OCP can only make recommendations to the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure for future improvements to the area.

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    Why can’t people who live full time in their Naramata home rent out a room or a basement suite short term without worrying about providing a breakfast or whether there are cooking facilities. Making short term rentals easier for residents could provide well needed places for visitors to stay without disrupting residential neighbourhoods. Rentals where home owners live in the home and are present is a good option.

    Patti Lacis asked about 2 months ago

    Currently the zoning bylaw defines bed and breakfasts and vacation rentals separately. Anything that does not meet the definition of bed and breakfast (i.e. in the principle dwelling unit and providing breakfast) would have to go through a vacation rental temporary use permit (TUP) process. This is something that a vacation rental review could change with an ammendmend to the applicable OCP and zoning bylaws, at the discretion of the Regional District Board.

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    Many people have concerns over the increase and the rules around Short term rentals. Why hasn’t there been a pause on further approvals while the matter is thoroughly considered

    Patti Lacis asked about 2 months ago

    Vacation/short term rentals are a big concern in the community and one of the many topics being discussed throughout this OCP process.

    Changes to the policy that are specific to the community can be made through this OCP Review. For example, it the community recomended that vacation rentals were acceptable on larger properties, but not in the village on small properties where noise may be more of a problem.

    Changing the overall approach to vacation/short term rentals requires a region-wide review, since it affects other electoral areas in addition to Electoral Area "E". This must be prioritized and budgeted for by the Regional District Board.

    The RDOS Board cannot stop property owners from applying for a vacation rental if this is something that interests the ower. However, the RDOS Board could determine to refuse/deny applicaitons until a review has been completed. Again, this must be determined by the Regional District Board.

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    Hi -i is the meeting on the 29th being recorded?

    csutton asked about 2 months ago

    Yes, all public meetings are being recorded and realeased on YouTube. The links will be available here on RDOS Regional Connections page.

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    With respect, Under the current regulations currently any persons buying a property on the Naramata bench with a house one one side and a vineyard on the other could end up with a DE-FACTO HOTEL on one side and a winery/bar on the other. How does the RDOS plan to address this potentiality? And, also what plans are in place for the increased traffic, road damage, signs, intoxicated patrons, tour buses, Etc?

    Mike asked 3 months ago

    Agri-tourism accomodation and wineries are allowed in the agriculture zones provided that they are in compliance with the RDOS zoning requirements and the Agricultural Land Commisions' requirements that aim to protect farm land. Typically, the size of argricultural lots in Naramata limits such accomodations to 0-5 units of up to 30 m² each. New home owners are encouraged to read current planning documents and reach out to RDOS staff prior to purchasing property to determine zoning in their area if these uses are a concern.

    Naramata Road is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure. There are certainly concerns with the level of traffic and unsafe conditions (i.e. speeds, cyclists and pedestrians on the shoulder, and intoxicaiton) along the road in the summer. The OCP can and will recommend improvements to Naramata Road; however, it is at the discretion of the Ministry to determine, if, how, and when such improvements will be done.

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    I would like a ban on vacation and short term rentals. Can you tell me what are the plans for these in the future? We need accommodation for families and working people in Naramata.

    Mike McConnell asked 3 months ago

    Vacation rentals are one of the many issues being addressed throughout the OCP process. Some people in the community want a total ban and some want complete freedom to operate them however they like. There are many with opinions in the middle favoring controls. 

    This will be one of the topics discussed throughout the process to determine what policies regarding vacation rentals will go into your community's OCP. 

    While vacation rentals and full time accommodation are linked. Banning one does not necessarily lead to the other. Many of the vacation rental properties in the area are owned by people who use it themselves for vacation purposes in the summer, so these homes will never be rented year-round. Others have had problems with past renters under the Residential Tenancy Act (RTA) and would rather leave the home vacant than rent under the RTA. 

    Improving accommodation availability for families and working people in Naramata will be more complex than simply banning vacation rentals.

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    I am looking for the access to print a questionnaire; I am on my third trip through Regional Connections looking for it!

    Velma asked 3 months ago

    Thank you for the feedback. We've added a link to the top of the page that should be easier to find. The print survey is available here: https://rdosregionalconnections.ca/22758/widgets/109254/documents/75303 

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    The sideyard setbacks were recently changed from 3 meters to 1.5 meteers. Why were these changes made? Was the public consulted? Were the necessary changes made to the building codes to deal with the additional fire hazard from these changes?

    Morlidge asked 5 months ago

    This change was made on properties with residential zoning in Naramata. It was part of an Okanagan-wide (Electoral Areas "A", "C", "D", "E", "F", and "I") review of residential and small holdings zones. The new amendment bylaw was adopted December 2, 2021.

    These efforts are part of a decade-long process to make a single zoning bylaw in all Okanagan electoral areas. The new bylaw will be easier to interpret, since it will be consistent for neighbouring electoral areas. 

    Naramata was the only community in the Okanagan with a 3.0 metres interior side yard setback. This was reduced to 1.5 metres to be consistent with the other areas. It is also helpful for property owners on residential lots to place buildings and structures. Naramata residents often applied for development variance permits (DVPs) to reduce the side setback since their lots are small. This will no longer be a problem and save staff time and community resources.

    The building department manages fire separation requirements and includes these in their permitting and inspection processes.

    For more information on the single zoning bylaw and the residential zoning update, including the public consultation, see the project pages linked above.

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    What is happening with respect to LWM (sewage treatment) for Naramata? We cannot continue to polute the lake.

    Morlidge asked 5 months ago

    The RDOS recognizes this and is currently in the process of completing the Liquid Waste Management Plan (LWMP). 

    The project team is currently working with a consultant (McElhanney) to review the needs and options for a potential sewer system in the village. Part of this process is also determining costs and a funding structure for the system.

    For more information, visit the project page here.