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Proposed lighthouse-shaped wine tasting tower not getting glowing reviews in West Kelowna, B.C.

Reference: CBC News

West Kelowna, B.C., is happy with a new winery to boost its agri-tourism industry, but has second thoughts about a nine-storey building planned for the vineyard.

On Tuesday, the Okanagan city's council voted unanimously to support Monette Farms' proposal to create Goat's Peak Winery on Highway 97. But it postponed discussion on the company's plan to build a 35-metre lighthouse-shaped wine tasting facility.

Monette Farms bought the land near a regional park last fall. In its letters to the city council, the Saskatchewan-based company says it envisions the lighthouse as a tourist attraction, where visitors can enjoy a panoramic view of the city and Okanagan Lake from the top.

West Kelowna's official community plan doesn't address the height of buildings on agricultural land, but the city's zoning bylaw limits them to 15 metres. So city council will have to decide whether to approve a development variance permit that would allow Monette Farms to build a taller structure.

If approved, the lighthouse would be the tallest building in West Kelowna.

Coun. Carol Zanon said there's no way the lighthouse construction plan will get past her until she hears from the public.

"I deplore this as the epitome of bad taste," she said in the Tuesday council meeting. "It cast a pall of atmosphere over the whole side of that mountain."

Other wineries in the Okanagan have structural landmarks similar to the lighthouse, such as the pyramid at Kelowna's Summerhill Pyramid Winery and the bell tower at West Kelowna's Mission Hill Winery, which is 33.8 m tall... Read More