Growth Management

Posted on August 10, 2011


This section of the Official Community Plan is particularly interesting because of the recent Aquatic Centre proposal and it’s relation to quality of life and infrastructure.

Section 7.0 states:

Growth Management is an essential component of a well planned community as it enables a community to direct growth in a manner that protects quality of life; protects environmentally sensitive areas; and utilizes resources & infrastructure efficiently.

The OCP also states that the recent population increase is being driven by amenity migration instead of resource extraction activities. In addition, due to the proximity of Vancouver and popularity of local recreational opportunities (i.e. snowmobiling, fishing) a large shadow-population of seasonal residents own property in the area.

Some context:

A study undertaken by the Similkameen Valley Planning Society (SVPS) in 2007 explored the trend of amenity migration into the broader Similkameen Valley region, and provides some interesting insights. In general terms, the Survey found that four of the top five reasons provided by respondents for choosing to live in the Similkameen involved natural amenities.

Accordingly, the SVPS considered the natural characteristics of the area to be a
dominant pull factor in attracting and retaining residents, and that these natural amenities should be seen as possessing an economic value as the source of a “people industry”.

The second set of reasons provided by respondents were considered to be a mix of natural amenities and appreciations of rural life, leading the SVPS to conclude that “people in the Similkameen value the relatively un-spoilt quality of the natural environment, access to outdoor recreation, and slower pace compared to where they migrated from.”

To read more of the DRAFT Electoral Area ‘H’ Official Community Plan Bylaw 2497, 2011 you can download your own copy from the RDOS web site. The community is currently invited to provide preliminary feedback on this document prior to the consideration by the Regional District Board later this fall.

Posted in: Bylaws, OCP