The Central Okanagan Planning Study
This website is for interested citizens to learn more about the transportation planning going on in the Central Okanagan, and to take part in the discussion. It’s all part of the ministry’s Central Okanagan Planning Study. The purpose of the study is to develop potential route proposals to address future mobility in the Central Okanagan area.
The study has been looking at needs of the travelling public, community land use plans, provincial transportation priorities and a possible future second crossing of Okanagan Lake. Related to this is the Highway 97 – Peachland Transportation Study which is underway to identify and assess possible short, medium, and long-term solutions to address future needs through and/or around Peachland.
Status update – Summer 2018
Study activity to date
To date, the Central Okanagan Planning Study has completed:
- A review and analysis of the existing conditions and performance of the Highway 97 corridor, with results shared with the public for feedback in May 2015
- A forecast of anticipated future conditions to assess the future transportation needs of the corridor, which reflected additional public input received in November 2015
- A range of preliminary concepts for improvements to the corridor, including possible alternate routes, shared with the public for feedback in March 2017
- A reduced study area for a possible second crossing of Okanagan Lake, also shared with the public for feedback in March 2017.
COPS is currently working on the Options Screening & Review phase and is expected to complete later this year.
Aligning with local and regional plans
In 2018 the Sustainable Transportation Partnership of the Central Okanagan (STPCO) and City of Kelowna each initiated transportation planning studies to develop long term regional transportation strategies. These are expected to complete in late 2019. The final phase of COPS to confirm the recommended improvements and strategy for the transportation system, including the 2nd crossing evaluation, is scheduled to begin toward the end of 2019 once STPCO and the City of Kelowna have completed their regional/municipal transportation plans. Work to date on COPS will help inform both of these plans, and ministry staff are working closely with both groups. These transportation plans are important inputs into the final phase of COPS and will provide a stronger connection to regional/municipal plans.
The work to date on COPS has identified the Glenmore/Beaver Lake Road area as a high priority and a planning study to determine the long term solution for this area will be proceeding this fall. The study area will be from the north end of Duck Lake to Lodge Road and is expected to start Fall of 2018 and will take approximately 2 years. A website with details about the study and how public engagement will be included will be launched this fall when the project kicks off.