Ride-hailing service launches in West Kelowna, still recruiting




West Kelowna residents have a new way to get around starting Monday.

New ride-hailing service, Uride launched Monday morning at 9 a.m.in West Kelowna, after previously providing service in Kelowna May 5 and Kamloops in early June, to great success.

“We’re very excited to be able to provide the people of West Kelowna with access to safe and reliable transportation 24/7. Being born and raised in the Kelowna area, I can relate to the struggles of not being able to find a ride home at certain times. Uride is now here with a team of dedicated drivers ready to prevent impaired driving and change the way people move around in West Kelowna”, said Ravi Dhami, western Canada operations manager for Uride.

Uride also has plans to launch service in Nanaimo, Prince George and Victoria, “with the goal of bringing safe and reliable transportation to underserved cities across Canada,” Dhami says.

As part of the West Kelowna launch, Uride users will receive a discount of up to 50% off all rides to a max of $10 each ride when using the promotion code WESTKELOWNA50 from June 27 to June 30. Uride is available for download on the App Store and Google Play Store.

Uride is also aggressively recruiting drivers to join the platform and they are offering part-time drivers a $1,000 sign-on bonus as well as weekly guarantees that could pay upwards of $30/hour.



The City of West Kelowna has lifted its boil water advisory for the Lakeview-Rose Valley water system.

The boil water notice was originally needed due to increased turbidity and seasonal algal blooms, but those conditions have now subsided.

The system is typically plagued with water notices of varying severity every spring. A water quality advisory — which provides recommendations to the elderly and very young only — was first put in place for the season 78 days ago on March 31, 2022.

The city is in the process of building a new water treatment plant to permanently fix the problem.

Water quality advisories, however, remain in effect until further notice for two other water systems — West Kelowna Estates and Sunnyside/Pritchard – due to elevated, freshet-related turbidity in Okanagan Lake at the systems’ intakes.

As a result, the city will continue to offer affected residents free access to the bulk filling station for the duration of these other water quality advisories. The station is located at Asquith and Shannon Lake Roads. Bring clean bottles for filling.

A map of impacted water systems is here.

West Kelowna to celebrate new skateboard park



West Kelowna is celebrating the opening of its new skateboard park this weekend.

The official opening is Saturday between 1:30 and 4 p.m. — skateboarders and skateboard enthusiasts of all ages are invited to the celebration.

The park opened unofficially in the fall of 2021 and the site of the old skateboard park is making way for the construction of West Kelowna’s new city hall and library.

“This popular amenity will provide opportunities for all ages and abilities to enjoy and be a welcoming place to gather,” said West Kelowna Mayor Gord Milsom.

The celebration is free and the skateboarding community is invited to enjoy a live DJ, food trucks will be on site along with skateboarding demos and competitions.

A ribbon-cutting was held last fall but an official opening was postponed until after COVID-19 restrictions were lifted.

The new park is near the old location, next to the Johnson Bentley Pool.


A West Kelowna apartment building has been deemed the best in Canada by a national organization.

Carrington View Apartments, which is located on Majoros Road, captured the Rental Development of the Year Award at the Canadian Federation of Apartment Associations’ National Rental Housing Awards earlier this month.

The CFAA is the national voice of the apartment housing industry in Canada and engages in advocacy on behalf of the industry as a whole. It also believes Carrington View Apartments was the best development of the year for its spectacular views of Okanagan Lake, great access to nearby outdoor recreational opportunities, and its focus on sustainability and environmental friendliness.

Highstreet Ventures built the 186-unit property to be net-zero energy ready, putting it well ahead of its time. The building is managed by Skyline Living, whose parent company is based in Guelph, Ont.

“We’ve gone with a totally holistic building approach,” Highstreet project co-ordinator Will Monforton said in a press release. “That means everything from low-(volatile organic compound) paints, where we source our wood and building materials and efficient construction to recycling materials, high-efficiency, all-electric heat and water heating and solar panels on the roof.”

Skyline Living also won the rental housing provider of the year award.

West Kelowna residents will pay more for water and sewer


Utility rates going up

The cost of some city-provided utilities are going up in West Kelowna.

Council gave final reading to bylaw amendments which will increase the cost of water, sewer, while at the same time lowering the cost residents pay for waste removal.

Residents who will receive water from the Rose Valley Water Treatment Plant will have their rates go up,retroactive to January 1, by $8.25 per quarter this year.

Those rates are expected to rise again in 2023 and 2024.

Powers Creek water rates are going up an estimated $8.75 per quarter for a single-family residence, “due to anticipated acquisition of short-term debt to fund aging components of the infrastructure and a review of costs required to operate the treatment plant.”

Sewer rates will be going up $2.78 per quarter for 2023 and 2024. Staff indicate this is the first increase in four years.

While water and sewer rates are going up, waste collection costs are on their way down.

Waste collection are being reduced $4.97 per quarter as lower contract costs have offset increases to tipping fees.

City of West Kelowna seeks input on 2022 budget. 4% tax increase


Input sought on city budget

The City of West Kelowna is seeking resident feedback on its proposed 2022 budget, which will bring with it a 4% tax increase.

The tax bump includes 2.4% to cover police services cost increases, a 1% infrastructure levy to support the delivery of sidewalks and other priority infrastructure investments and 0.6% for other operating and capital costs.

“Council urges the public to become involved in our budget process that guides our tax rates, our investments and operations,” says Mayor Gord Milsom. “This is one of the most important annual community-wide engagement programs that directly affects how we build a better tomorrow. We live, work and play in this beautiful City of West Kelowna, and community input truly shapes our future for generations to come.”

“Please take a few minutes to tell us what’s important to you across the City and locally in your neighbourhood,” says Milsom.

The city is holding a virtual open house at OurWK.ca. Online question and answer sessions will take place on Feb. 3 from 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. and Feb. 10 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Feedback is being accepted until Feb. 13.

You can also stop by the display at Royal LePage Place Arena, the Westbank Library or Municipal Hall to pick up an engagement toolkit

Give and Volunteer in Kelowna


Kelowna Santas is a volunteer initiative that works to provide a better Christmas for less fortunate children in Lake Country, Kelowna and West Kelowna.

Volunteering with Kelowna Santas allows you to bring joy to families this Christmas as you wrap and deliver presents for the people in the community that need it the most. 

It’s inspiring to see that so many members of our community want to make a positive impact in the lives of less fortunate children every year.

To give a gift, just visit one of the many drop locations to donate a new unwrapped gift.

+ Contact + Info

+ Register your family


Donate to the Vernon Salvation Army is to go to our website: vernonhouseofhope.com and click on one of the ‘donate today’ buttons. You can also drop off donations to the House of Hope at 3303 32 Ave or the Thrift Store at Unit 1 – 5400 24 Street both in Vernon.

To volunteer, check out their volunteer page: vernonhouseofhope.com/volunteering to get information. Or call 250-549-4111 and ask to speak with the person in charge of volunteers.

Different volunteer positions include the Food Bank (sorting, distributing, packing hampers, etc.), Thrift Store, and Emergency Response (preparing and serving food off emergency trucks during emergency situations).

+ Contact and Info


The Christmas Hamper Program at Archway Society for Domestic Peace – a transition house for women in Vernon – invites members of the community to sponsor a Christmas Hamper for a family in need this holiday season. If you are interested in sponsoring a family, please reach out to Archway Society (contact info below) for more information.

+ Contact and Info

+ Wish List Ideas

+ Donate Money Directly


Be a Santa to a Senior in Vernon, Kelowna, West Kelowna and Penticton who may be isolated from friends or family this holiday season. Visit one of these participating London Drugs, and locate their Be a Santa to a Senior tree:

  • 4400 32 St., Vernon

  • 1950 Harvey Ave., Kelowna

  • 2111 Main St., Penticton

  • 2151 Louie Dr., Westbank

Each tree will be decorated with ornaments featuring seniors’ first names and their desired gifts. Buy the requested gift and return it to the store with the ornament attached. Community volunteers will wrap and deliver the gifts to local seniors in time for the holidays.

+ Contact and Info


Candy Cane Lane consists of several connecting streets in a quiet Rutland neighbourhood, where houses are decorated with spectacular holiday displays for the month of December. It’s free to visit, but visitors are asked to bring non-perishable items for the food bank.

Where: Gramiak Rd., Kelowna

When: From 5 p.m. until bedtime, every night throughout December.


Kelowna Women’s Shelter offers a safe place to stay, and essentials such as food, clothing, and toiletries for women in need. Residents are provided with emergency housing, as well as crisis intervention, support and outreach counselling, and children’s programs.

  • Head over here If you’re interested in donating to this important organization.

  • Quality used items are also welcome, and can be dropped of from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday, Wednesday and Saturday.

  • For a comprehensive list of items most needed, or wish list items such as phone cards, movie passes, toiletries, pyjamas, and baby items, check out this useful PDF.

+ Contact and Info

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The NexusBC Making Spirits Bright campaign provides gift cards for items that low-income Vernon seniors want and need.

  • Purchase a gift card from a local store that can provide basic necessities (food, toiletries, clothing), and bring this to the NexusBC office along with a cheerful card.Add it to a small gift that they can unwrap on Christmas Day.

  • Useful gift cards include the Wholesale Club, Safeway, and Walmart.

  • Drop off your donation to NexusBC Community Resource Centre, 3201 30th St. Vernon

+ Contact and Info


With snow just around the corner, the NexusBC Community Resource Centre is in need of snow shovellers to help local seniors keep their driveways and sidewalks clear.

+ Contact and Info


Cross Country Ski and Snow Shoe trails



Silverstar Mountain Resort, VERNON


Discover the beauty, sweeping views and 700cm of annual snowfall in the Monashee Mountain range! Silverstar is located 22 km East of Vernon and is a full mountain resort offering a variety of activities and services.

More Info: -HERE-

Map: -HERE-



Sovereign Lake, VERNON


Check out Canada’s largest groomed network of cross-country ski and snow shoe trails! Sovereign Lake is a designated nordic centre 24 km East of Vernon. The high elevation, abundance of dry snowfall and mild winter temperatures provide for outstanding conditions.

More Info: -HERE-

Map: -HERE-



Predator Ridge, VERNON


Explore 1,200 acres on snowshoes! Predator Ridge is a golf community tucked up in the hills 15 km South of Vernon. In the winter, you will find a wonderland of snow, mountain & lake views, wildlife and un-groomed (but well tromped) snowshoe trails.

More Info: -HERE-

Map: -HERE-



Kelowna Nordic Club, KELOWNA


Perched in the hills, come and experience a unique skiing experience filled with state-of-the-art grooming and rustic facilities! Kelowna Nordic Club is 50 km east of Kelowna.

More Info: -HERE-

Map: -HERE-



Big White Mountain Resort, KELOWNA


Hailed as Canada’s largest ski-in, ski-out resort village, Big White is nestled high in the mountain tops! 56 km east of Kelowna, you will find your self in a vibrant little winter town full of things to do.

More Info: -HERE-

Map: -HERE-



Telemark Nordic Club, WEST KELOWNA


Discover stunning ski and shoe trails through snow-kissed forests with sweeping valley views. Telemark is a mountain gem 26km West of Kelowna (see map below in red).

More Info: -HERE-

Map: -HERE-


West Kelowna rejects proposal for winery lookout tower


Winery tower crushed

A wine tasting building proposed for Goat’s Peak Winery will not become the tallest structure in West Kelowna.

Developers of Goat’s Peak Winery had originally proposed a 35 metre tall tasting facility in the form of a lighthouse.

Council deferred a decision on that design after giving it a lukewarm reception, prompting winery owner Darrel Monette to scrap the lighthouse in favour of a more slender, concrete structure.

At 35 metres, the building would easily be the tallest in the city, 10 metres taller than the bell tower at Mission Hill Winery.

Monette is seeking a non-farm use in order to construct the building on ALR land and, at the same time, is asking the city for a height variance. The maximum height allowed is 15 metres.

City planning manager Brent Magnan said the new iteration of the tasting room tower is a “significant redesign” over the lighthouse, but added height was still an issue.

If approved, he told council the city would have to spend about $250,000 on a new training program for the West Kelowna Fire Department.

Fire Chief Jason Brolund suggested the costs, including about $150,000 in training alone, could be spread over two years. Training and equipment would be required before the building opened to the public.

The expenditure was a non-starter for Coun. Rick de Jong, who didn’t see the need for a 35 metre “lookout tower.”

“I think the driving force behind that investment should be because we have a highrise tower coming in with residential development where those apartments are going to be paying taxes, and provide homes for people to live in,” he said.

“This proposal does none of that.”

De Jong says it’s no secret the new Official Community Plan will include highrises in city, but says that should be the driving force behind investing money for firefighter training, not something like this.

Coun. Doug Findlater called the money a “business subsidy,” and didn’t agree with spending it this way.

Speaking in favour of the tower, Coun. Jason Friesen argued the money has to be spent sometime and, whether it’s for this building or something else doesn’t matter.

He also applauded the winery for coming back with a “classy building.”

“We have to remember that part of tourism is about the experience so, yes, it’s a lookout tower, but it’s an experience,” said Friesen.

“We want to create experiences for our residents, experiences for our tourists, and we have to spend the money anyway.”

The tower idea was voted down 4-2, with only councillors Friesen and Jayson Zilkie voting in support.

West Kelowna has a plan to keep its infrastructure working in case of a power failure


Plan to keep water flowing

The City of West Kelowna and the Emergency Operations Centre are putting plans in place in case the Brenda Creek Wildfire impedes the only source of power into the Greater Westside region.

The region seems to have dodged one bullet as the fire reportedly reached transmission lines but has moved past.

However, a few brief power flickers Thursday afternoon suggest they are not out of the woods just yet.

West Kelowna engineering general manager Allen Fillion tells Castanet News plans are in place to keep the city’s main water treatment plant, pump stations and lift stations operational in case of an outage.

He says the Powers Creek water treatment plant has backup generators to power about half of the facility. He says that will allow it to run, albeit at a reduced capacity.

“Most of our major water pump stations also have backup power,” said Fillion.

“On the sewer side, the major lift stations have backup power, but there’s a handful of smaller ones that don’t. We have portable generators that we use to pump them down, get the capacity regained, then move on to the next one.”

He says if there are challenges with the generators, they have a city VAC truck, and can procure others to “suck them out,” and keep the lift stations operating.

“We do have a plan in place. It’s not ideal, and it will take a lot of staff time and effort.

“So, obviously, we would really be appealing to the public to limit water consumption and sewer usage.”

Fillion says the EOC is also working to secure additional fuel to keep the generators up and running.