The Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) announced they are taking the next step in the process to purchase land for a new regional park on the East Shore of Kootenay Lake. This follows several months of community consultation and negotiation with the seller. The land—made up of approximately 69.68 hectares surrounding the Crawford Bay beach and wetlands—is being purchased from Kokanee Springs Resorts (KSR) for $2.85 million.
The purchase is being partially funded with $800,000 from Columbia Basin Trust. The remainder of funding for the purchase will be through property taxation and reserve funds.
“Public access to Kootenay Lake, recreational opportunities, protection of sensitive wetlands and riparian area restoration all resonate with residents and visitors alike,” said Garry Jackman, Director of RDCK Electoral Area A. “Through the efforts of RDCK staff and with the generosity and support of Columbia Basin Trust we have reached that point at last.”
“The residents of the East Shore demonstrated overwhelming support for this opportunity, and the Trust is pleased to support their efforts to create a regional park,” said Johnny Strilaeff, President and CEO of Columbia Basin Trust. “It will offer a broad spectrum of benefits to the area including environmental preservation, economic development, tourism opportunities and increased community-based recreation.”
In 2011, the RDCK acquired a small area of land along an undeveloped road allowance near the Crawford Bay foreshore as a preliminary step towards a potentially larger project. Historically, KSR has allowed the public to access Crawford Bay wetlands and the beach through a portion of their property. In the summer of 2017, KSR listed the land for sale, which prompted members of the community to express interest in the RDCK acquiring it for regional park purposes.
To read the full news release, click here.