Kelowna

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Kelowna
City of Kelowna
Kelowna city view 2017.jpg
Winter lookout over the peaks of Central Okanagan.png
Mission Hill.jpg
William R. Bennett Bridge.jpg
Kelowna - Lake Okanagan - panoramio.jpg
From top left: Downtown Kelowna from Knox Mountain Park, the peaks of Central Okanagan, Mission Hill Winery and Bell Tower, the William R. Bennett Bridge on Okanagan Lake, Okanagan Lake near Rotary Beach Park
Flag of Kelowna
Flag
Coat of arms of Kelowna
Coat of arms
Official logo of Kelowna
Nickname(s): 
Orchard City,[1] K-Town
Motto(s): 
"Fruitful in Unity"
Kelowna is located in British Columbia
Kelowna
Kelowna
Location of Kelowna in British Columbia
Coordinates: 49°53′17″N 119°29′44″W / 49.88806°N 119.49556°W / 49.88806; -119.49556Coordinates: 49°53′17″N 119°29′44″W / 49.88806°N 119.49556°W / 49.88806; -119.49556
CountryCanada
ProvinceBritish Columbia
RegionOkanagan
Regional DistrictCentral Okanagan
Settled1879
Incorporated5 May 1905
Government
 • TypeElected city council
 • BodyKelowna City Council
 • MayorColin Basran
 • MPDan Albas (CPC)
Tracy Gray (CPC)
 • MLAsNorm Letnick (BCL)
Ben Stewart (BCL)
Steve Thomson (BCL)
Area
 • City211.82 km2 (81.78 sq mi)
 • Metro
2,904.86 km2 (1,121.57 sq mi)
Elevation
344 m (1,129 ft)
Population
 (2020)
 • City142,146 (BC Stats Jan 2,020)
 • Density601.3/km2 (1,557/sq mi)
 • Metro
217,214 (BC Stats Jan 2,020)
Time zoneUTC−08:00 (PST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−07:00 (PDT)
Forward sortation area
Area code(s)250, 778, 236
Highways Hwy 97 & Hwy 33
GNBC CodeJAFUV[3]
WebsiteOfficial website

Kelowna (/kəˈlnə/) is a city on Okanagan Lake in the Okanagan Valley in the southern interior of British Columbia, Canada. It serves as the head office of the Regional District of the Central Okanagan. The name Kelowna derives from an Okanagan language word for "grizzly bear".[4]

Kelowna is the province's third-largest metropolitan area (after Vancouver and Victoria), its seventh-largest city overall, and the largest in the Interior.[5] It is the 22nd-largest city in Canada. The city proper encompasses 211.82[2] square kilometres (81.78 sq mi), and the census metropolitan area 2,904.86 square kilometres (1,121.57 sq mi).[2] In 2019, it was estimated Kelowna's population had grown to 217,229 in the metropolitan area and 142,146 in the city proper.[6]

Nearby communities include the City of West Kelowna (also referred to as Westbank and Westside) to the west, across Okanagan Lake; Lake Country and Vernon to the north; Peachland to the southwest; and Summerland and Penticton to the south.

History[edit]

Exact dates of first settlement are unknown, but a northern migration led to the habitation of this area some 9,000 years ago.[7] The Indigenous Syilx people were the region's first inhabitants, and they continue to live in the region.

Father Pandosy, a French Roman Catholic Oblate missionary, became the first European to settle in Kelowna in 1859 at a place he named "l'Anse au Sable" (Bay of Sand) in reference to the sandy shoreline. Kelowna was officially incorporated on 4 May 1905.[8]

Kelowna celebrated its centennial in May 2005. The same year, construction began on the new five-lane William R. Bennett Bridge to replace the three-lane Okanagan Lake Bridge, as part of a plan to alleviate traffic problems during summer tourist season. The new bridge was completed in 2008.[9]

Stubbs House is a historic house in Kelowna.[10]

Significant events[edit]

  • On 3 July 1877, George Mercer Dawson was the first geologist to visit Kelowna.[11]
  • On 6 August 1969, a sonic boom from a nearby air show broke a quarter million dollars worth of glass, injuring six people. It was caused by a member of America's Blue Angels during a practice routine for the Kelowna Regatta festival; the pilot accidentally broke the sound barrier while flying too low.[12]
  • The last time the lake completely froze over was in the winter of 1969. It may have frozen over in the winter of 1986.[13]
  • On 25 November 2005, the First Ministers and National Aboriginal Leaders signed the Kelowna Accord.[14]
  • In 2009, Kelowna built the tallest building between Vancouver and Calgary: Skye at Waterscapes, a 27-story residential tower.

Area seasonal wildfires[edit]

  • On 7 May 1992, a forest fire consumed 60 hectares (ha) of forest on Mount Boucherie in West Kelowna, across Okanagan Lake from Kelowna proper. No homes were damaged.
  • In August 2003, a nearby wildfire destroyed 239 homes and forced the temporary evacuation of about 30,000 residents.[15] Many trestles of the historic Kettle Valley Railway were destroyed. The trestles have been rebuilt to look like the originals, but using smaller dimension beams.
  • In late August 2005, a 30-ha fire caused multiple evacuations in the Rose Valley subdivision in West Kelowna.
  • In July 2009, wildfires destroyed hundreds of hectares of forest and a number of buildings in West Kelowna; 17,000 residents were evacuated.[16]
  • In July 2009, a 100-ha fire near Rose Valley caused the evacuation of 7,000 people. No structures were lost.
  • In July 2009, a 9,200-ha fire behind Fintry caused the evacuation of 2,500 people. No structures were lost.
  • On 12 July 2010, a 30-ha fire in West Kelowna destroyed one home and caused multiple evacuations.
  • September 2011, a 40-ha fire in West Kelowna's Bear Creek Park caused the evacuation of over 500 people.
  • In July 2012, a 30-ha fire caused the evacuation of the small community of Wilson's Landing, just north of West Kelowna.
  • In September 2012, a late-season, 200-ha fire destroyed seven buildings and caused the evacuation of 1,500 people in the community of Peachland.
  • In July 2014, a 340-ha fire behind the West Kelowna subdivision of Smith Creek caused the evacuation of 3,000 people.
  • In August 2014, a 40-ha fire above Peachland required one home to be evacuated.
  • In July 2015, a 55-ha fire in the Joe Rich area caused the evacuation of over 100 properties.
  • In July 2015, a 560-ha fire near Shelter Cove caused the evacuation of 70 properties.
  • In August 2015, a 130-ha fire burned near Little White Mountain, just south of Kelowna.
  • In August 2017, a 400-ha fire in the Joe Rich area caused the evacuation of over 474 properties.[17]

Geography[edit]

Landmarks[edit]

  • Mission Creek
  • Bellevue Canyon
  • Layer Cake Hill
  • Pinnacle Rock
  • Gallagher's Canyon
  • Crawford Falls
  • Knox Mountain
  • Myra Canyon
  • Mission Creek Falls
  • Black Knight Mountain
  • Maude-Roxby Wetlands
  • Okanagan Lake

Vegetation[edit]

Balsamorhiza sagittata, found on Knox Mountain

Kelowna's official flower is Balsamorhiza sagittata, commonly referred to as arrowleaf balsamroot.[18]

Climate[edit]

Kelowna is classified as a humid continental climate or an inland oceanic climate per the Köppen climate classification system due to its coldest month having an average temperature slightly above −3.0 °C (26.6 °F) and below 0 °C (32 °F),[19] with dry, hot, sunny summers and cool, cloudy winters, and four seasons.[20][21] The official climate station for Kelowna is at the Kelowna International Airport, which is at a higher altitude than the city core, with slightly higher precipitation and cooler nighttime temperatures. Kelowna has the second mildest winter of any non-coastal city in Canada, after neighbouring Penticton.[22] This is caused by the moderating effects of Okanagan Lake combined with mountains separating most of BC from the prairies; however Arctic air masses do occasionally penetrate the valley during winter, usually for very short periods. The coldest recorded temperature in the city was −36.1 °C (−33.0 °F) recorded on 30 December 1968.

Weather conditions during December and January are the cloudiest in Canada outside of Newfoundland due to persistent valley cloud. As Okanagan Lake hardly ever freezes, warmer air rising from the lake climbs above colder atmospheric air, creating a temperature inversion which can cause the valley to be socked in by cloud. This valley cloud has a low ceiling, however, and often bright sunshine can be experienced by driving only 20 minutes or so up into the nearby mountains, above the cloud. Summers in Kelowna are hot (sometimes extremely hot) and sunny, with daytime temperatures often exceeding 32 °C (90 °F). The hottest recorded temperature at the airport was 39.5 °C (103.1 °F) on 24 July 1994, and the highest temperature ever recorded in the city was 41.0 °C (105.8 °F) on 4 August 1998, near but not at the airport.[23] Not unusually, heat waves occur in July, August, and even June and September on occasion, where temperatures above 30 °C (86 °F) persist for weeks. During summer, clear, dry air allows night-time temperatures to fall rapidly. The city averages about 380 mm (15 in) of precipitation per year, with about 1/5 of the precipitation falling as snow, the bulk in December and January; however, June is the wettest month of the year.

While some smaller communities such as Blue River and Golden get less wind, Kelowna has the greatest percentage of "calm" wind observations for any major city in Canada (39% of the time).[24][25] The four-year average wind measured at the airport has been less than 5 knots on average 10/12 months of the year between 2008 and 2011.[26] As shown in the climate chart below, Kelowna has an average high temperature that is above freezing every month of the year - an exceptionally rare phenomenon for an inland Canadian city. In fact, average high temperatures in January surpass those of St. John's, Newfoundland, which experiences heavy moderation from the warm Atlantic current. Kelowna's average year-round high temperature of about 14.3 °C (57.7 °F) is also one of the highest in Canada - largely due to the rare combination of high summer temperatures typical of continental climates, along with relatively mild winters - a very rare feature of a continental climate.

Climate data for Kelowna International Airport, 1981–2010 normals, extremes 1899–present[a]
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high humidex 13.0 14.5 21.1 28.0 37.0 42.3 46.4 45.6 34.9 26.7 20.6 13.9 46.4
Record high °C (°F) 14.8
(58.6)
17.2
(63.0)
20.8
(69.4)
28.1
(82.6)
34.4
(93.9)
39.5
(103.1)
39.5
(103.1)
39.3
(102.7)
35.0
(95.0)
26.8
(80.2)
20.6
(69.1)
14.5
(58.1)
39.5
(103.1)
Average high °C (°F) 0.8
(33.4)
3.6
(38.5)
10.1
(50.2)
15.5
(59.9)
20.2
(68.4)
24.2
(75.6)
27.9
(82.2)
27.6
(81.7)
21.7
(71.1)
13.4
(56.1)
5.6
(42.1)
0.7
(33.3)
14.3
(57.7)
Daily mean °C (°F) −2.5
(27.5)
−0.9
(30.4)
4.1
(39.4)
8.4
(47.1)
12.8
(55.0)
16.6
(61.9)
19.5
(67.1)
19.1
(66.4)
13.9
(57.0)
7.3
(45.1)
1.6
(34.9)
−2.6
(27.3)
8.1
(46.6)
Average low °C (°F) −5.8
(21.6)
−5.3
(22.5)
−2.0
(28.4)
1.3
(34.3)
5.4
(41.7)
9.1
(48.4)
11.1
(52.0)
10.6
(51.1)
5.9
(42.6)
1.3
(34.3)
−2.4
(27.7)
−5.9
(21.4)
1.9
(35.4)
Record low °C (°F) −31.7
(−25.1)
−28.3
(−18.9)
−22.2
(−8.0)
−9.4
(15.1)
−4.2
(24.4)
−1.1
(30.0)
2.6
(36.7)
0.6
(33.1)
−6.1
(21.0)
−15.7
(3.7)
−28.4
(−19.1)
−36.1
(−33.0)
−36.1
(−33.0)
Record low wind chill −39.7 −33.0 −25.0 −9.8 −5.4 −0.6 0.0 0.0 −7.3 −18.2 −36.3 −37.6 −39.7
Average precipitation mm (inches) 31.0
(1.22)
19.0
(0.75)
21.6
(0.85)
29.1
(1.15)
40.2
(1.58)
45.9
(1.81)
37.2
(1.46)
32.1
(1.26)
32.4
(1.28)
29.2
(1.15)
36.7
(1.44)
32.6
(1.28)
386.9
(15.23)
Average rainfall mm (inches) 8.9
(0.35)
10.0
(0.39)
16.9
(0.67)
28.3
(1.11)
39.2
(1.54)
45.9
(1.81)
37.2
(1.46)
32.1
(1.26)
31.7
(1.25)
29.1
(1.15)
24.4
(0.96)
7.6
(0.30)
311.3
(12.26)
Average snowfall cm (inches) 26.9
(10.6)
10.8
(4.3)
4.8
(1.9)
0.8
(0.3)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.1
(0.0)
13.6
(5.4)
32.0
(12.6)
89.0
(35.0)
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm) 13.9 10.3 10.5 10.9 12.9 12.0 9.2 8.5 8.7 11.3 14.4 14.1 136.6
Average rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm) 5.6 6.2 8.8 10.7 12.2 12.0 9.2 8.5 8.3 11.3 11.0 4.2 107.8
Average snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm) 10.0 5.6 2.4 0.6 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.2 4.7 11.0 34.5
Average relative humidity (%) 76.4 65.2 48.8 39.8 40.0 39.3 35.6 36.2 42.2 55.6 70.6 75.7 52.1
Mean monthly sunshine hours 39.4 80.9 148.5 191.0 238.2 244.9 297.8 281.6 216.2 124.5 50.9 35.1 1,948.9
Percent possible sunshine 14.8 28.5 40.4 46.3 49.9 50.2 60.5 62.8 56.9 37.2 18.6 13.9 40.0
Source: Environment Canada[24][27][28][29][30]

Sectors and neighbourhoods[edit]

Kelowna consists of ten sectors[31] with multiple neighbourhoods within the sector boundaries.[32]

View of Kelowna and Okanagan Lake from Knox Mountain

Neighbourhoods[edit]

Central City[edit]

Central City is a linear commercial sector along Harvey Avenue, from downtown to Highway 33. Major commercial developments include the Capri Centre mall, the Landmark buildings, and the Orchard Park Shopping Centre. Commercial activity is particularly concentrated along or near Highway 97 (Harvey).

Dilworth Mountain[edit]

Dilworth Mountain is a relatively low, isolated mountain of just over 2000 feet, near the city's geographic center. Adjoining Knox Mountain to the west, it is part of the eastern heights that form Glenmore Valley, and rises about one thousand feet above the rest of the Okanagan Valley. It has been extensively developed in recent years with scenic neighborhoods with suburban character that are only minutes from Central City. Like many other Kelowna residential districts, Dilworth has gone from relative isolation and wilderness to hosting hundreds of homes, many of which are considered fairly high-end.

Downtown[edit]

Downtown Kelowna from West Kelowna

Central Kelowna is a tourist district alongside Okanagan Lake. It is officially defined as all land north of Highway 97, south of Clement Avenue, east of Okanagan Lake, and west of Richter Street. There are two main routes through the downtown core along which attractions and commerce are concentrated, including several parks and beaches, boardwalks and other walking trails, Kelowna Marina and Yacht Club, the Delta Grand Hotel and Casino, and Prospera Place arena. The other main route through downtown is Bernard Avenue from Richter street to the lake, with more shops and restaurants designed for both locals and tourists. Although Bernard Avenue continues east well past downtown, it is not part of downtown and is zoned residential. The commercial segment lies within its downtown section between Richter and Abbott streets, the latter of which is lake-adjacent.[33]

Kelowna has declared a 1 km2 (0.39 sq mi) downtown area a "red zone" of prolific drug trafficking, assaults and robberies.[34] The red zone extends from Okanagan Lake to the west, Lake Avenue, Rowcliffe to Ethel and Ethel to Stockwell, Doyle and back to the lake.[35] The red zone was identified in 1992 to reduce street crime. The RCMP conducts annual "spring sweeps" there, arresting low-level drug dealers.[36][37] Kelowna was the second British Columbia city to declare a red zone.[35][38]

Glenmore[edit]

Glenmore is a relatively affluent suburb mostly within Glenmore Valley, a subsection of the Okanagan Valley in the Kelowna area. It has been extensively developed in the past two decades, transformed from a small suburb with a rural character to large suburban neighborhoods, including several elementary schools and a rapidly growing commercial hub. While most of its homes are on the relatively flat valley bottom, several large and more recent neighborhoods are being built into the adjacent mountains, including the community of Wilden.

Midtown[edit]

The Midtown area, bordered by Enterprise Way on the north and Springfield and Baron Road at the south, is a popular shopping destination for locals. Orchard Park, the shopping complex in BC's interior, is here. Since most of Midtown consists of large, car-oriented big-box stores, it is often criticized for its plainness; its contributions to urban sprawl and the decline of the pedestrian-oriented Downtown; and its lack of green space, as the area was formerly a linear park and golf course.

Mission[edit]

Known locally as "The Mission" (or "Okanagan Mission") to differentiate it from the Lower Mainland city of Mission, this area was a separate jurisdiction before being amalgamated with Kelowna in the mid- to late-20th century. It features a vibrant secondary commercial centre separate from that of Downtown, with low- to moderate-density residential areas between them. Its northern border is K.L.O. Road. It is often differentiated as Lower Mission and Upper Mission.

The Lower Mission contains most of the aforementioned commercial areas such as shopping malls, grocery stores, coffee shops, and boutiques. Lower Mission also has extensive recreational facilities, Mission Recreation Park has 6 softball diamonds as well as soccer fields, community gardens, playgrounds and trails, while neighbouring H20 is Kelowna's largest indoor recreation facility with a 50m pool, water slides, diving boards and surfing wave. Gyro Beach and Rotary Beach, two of Kelowna's most popular beaches, are also located in the Lower Mission.

The Upper Mission begins to extend into the foothills and higher terrain, and many parts of this area boast magnificent views of the city, mountains and Okanagan Lake. As a result, this part of town is widely regarded as luxurious and is indeed one of the most expensive neighbourhoods of Kelowna. It is not unusual to see homes worth one million dollars or more, the most expensive of which can reach 5 million or even slightly above.

Rutland[edit]

Rutland is Kelowna's largest neighbourhood by far. Although the majority of the area sits on the valley bottom and is therefore relatively flat, the fringes continue up into the hills and are therefore built at higher elevations and possess more expansive views than the rest of the neighbourhood; these homes are correspondingly more expensive. This is the exception, however, as the majority of Rutland is among the most affordable of Kelowna housing. There are also several low-rise apartment buildings which increase the population density relative to most other parts of town. Rutland was a town until it amalgamated with Kelowna in 1973,[39] and this union has resulted in Rutland having a distinct commercial centre with many shops and restaurants. An improvement and gentrification effort has been ongoing for the past decade, with new parks, widened sidewalks, bike lanes, a renovated YMCA, a rebuilt high school, and many new shops and condominiums being added.

Economy[edit]

The service industry employs the most people in Kelowna, the largest city in the tourist-oriented Okanagan Valley. In summer, boating, golf, hiking and biking are popular, and in winter, both skiing and snowboarding are favourite activities at the nearby Big White and Silver Star ski resorts. Tourism in the Greater Kelowna Area has now become a $1 billion a year industry, as of 2016.[40]

Kelowna produces wines that have received international recognition.[41][42] Vineyards are common around and south of the city where the climate is ideal for the many wineries. At least two major wineries were damaged or destroyed (now rebuilt) in 2003 due to the Okanagan Mountain Park Fire. Kelowna is also the home of Sun-Rype, a popular manufacturer of fruit bars and juices.

Okanagan College and University of British Columbia are the predominant centres for post-secondary education. Over 8,745[43] students attend Okanagan College and 8,718 students attend the University of British Columbia. In addition to vocational training and adult basic education, the college offers a highly regarded university transfer program. University of British Columbia's Okanagan campus has a student population of over 8,000 full-time students enrolled in diverse undergraduate and graduate programs.[44]

Kelowna is the seat of the Regional District of the Central Okanagan, the third-largest metropolitan area in British Columbia after Vancouver and Victoria and the largest in the British Columbia Interior. With scenic lake vistas and a dry, mild climate, Kelowna has become one of the fastest growing cities in North America. The appropriate management of such rapid development (and its attendant consequences) is a source of significant debate within the community. Kelowna is the fourth least affordable housing market in Canada, currently maintaining the classification of "Severely Unaffordable".[45] Because of the Okanagan's climate and vineyard-filled scenery, it is often compared to Napa Valley, California.[46]

Kelowna's use as a film locale[edit]

The first state of the art soundstage and film studio in Kelowna was announced by Burnaby-owned Eagle Creek productions, with construction sometime in 2017.

Kelowna's use as a market trial location[edit]

Due to its moderate population, Kelowna is often used as a market trial area where national businesses and organizations can test a new product. Examples include:

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
YearPop.±%
1901 261—    
1911 1,661+536.4%
1921 2,520+51.7%
1931 4,655+84.7%
1941 5,118+9.9%
1951 8,517+66.4%
1956 9,181+7.8%
1961 13,188+43.6%
1966 17,006+29.0%
1971 19,412+14.1%
1976 51,955+167.6%
1981 59,196+13.9%
1986 61,213+3.4%
1991 75,950+24.1%
1996 89,442+17.8%
2001 96,288+7.7%
2006 106,707+10.8%
2011 117,312+9.9%
2016 127,380+8.6%

As Kelowna has one of the most rapidly growing populations in Canada, its population statistics generally become out-of-date quite rapidly. According to the Statistics Canada 2011 census,[51] the population estimates there were 117,312 people residing in Kelowna proper, and 147,739 people residing in the Greater Kelowna Area. 48.4% of residents were male and 51.6% were female. The predominant language spoken in Kelowna is English.[52] More recent population estimates (as of 2014) give the Greater Kelowna Area a population of just under 200,000.[53]

Children under five accounted for approximately 4.8% of the resident population of Kelowna. This compares with 5.2% in British Columbia, and 5.6% for Canada overall. In mid-2001, 18.4% of the resident population in Kelowna were of retirement age (65 and over for males and females) compared with 13.2% in Canada; the average age is 41.1 years of age, compared to an average age of 37.6 years in Canada.

In the five years between 1996 and 2001, the population of Kelowna grew by 7.7%, compared with an increase of 4.9% for British Columbia as a whole. Population density of Kelowna averaged 601.3 people per square kilometre, compared with Vancouver at 5,335 people per square kilometre, and with all of British Columbia with an average of 4.2 people/km2.

Visible minorities make up about 6.2% of the population of Kelowna. The largest group of visible minorities are, in order of size, South Asian, Chinese, Japanese, Southeast Asian, Filipino and other Asian, Black, Latin American, multiple/other, and Arab.[54]

In February 2016, Statistics Canada released their latest census, stating that Kelowna's population had grown by 8.4% from 2011 to 2016. The population of the city proper had risen to 127,380 while greater Kelowna had a 2016 population of 151,957. The Kelowna metropolitan area population in 2016 is now at 194,882 making it one of the fastest growing metropolitan areas in Canada.

Kelowna's population growth has been driven primarily by the movement of Canadians from BC and other provinces into this region, not by international immigration.[54] Only 15.1% of the population is foreign born.[54] On 10 February 2016, Statistics Canada declared the 3.1% Kelowna census metropolitan area growth rate as being the highest in Canada.[55]

Religious groups[edit]

Population % of total
Catholic 27,610 15.5
Protestant Christian 51,530 29.2
Christian Orthodox 1,355 0.8
Christian, n.i.e. 14,680 8.3
Muslim 555 0.3
Jewish 430 0.2
Buddhist 695 0.4
Hindu 500 0.3
Sikh 1,875 1.1
Other religions 1,705 1.0
No religious affiliation 75,495 42.8
Total 176,435 100
Source: Statistics Canada 2011 Census[56]
Canada 2016 Census Population % of total population
Visible minority group
Source:[57]
South Asian 3,220 2.6%
Chinese 1,810 1.5%
Black 1,005 0.8%
Filipino 1,440 1.2%
Latin American 765 0.6%
Arab 255 0.2%
Southeast Asian 535 0.4%
West Asian 345 0.3%
Korean 560 0.5%
Japanese 1,200 1%
Other visible minority 235 0.2%
Mixed visible minority 380 0.3%
Total visible minority population 11,745 9.5%
Aboriginal group
Source:[58]
First Nations 4,485 3.6%
Métis 3,525 2.8%
Inuit 120 0.1%
Total Aboriginal Population 7,830 6.3%
White 104,560 84.2%
Total population 124,135 100%

Ethnic Chinese[edit]

Kelowna had a historic Chinatown in the area between Harvey Avenue and Leon Avenue, east of Abbott and west of Highway 97/Harvey Avenue.[59] Historically most residents of this Chinatown were males.[60] In 1909 15% of Kelowna's population was ethnic Chinese.[59] In 1911 the percentage was the same. That year Sun Yat-sen visited Kelowna for fundraising purposes.[61] In 1978 the final remaining traditional Chinese business ceased operations.[59] By 2010 less than 1% of Kelowna's population was ethnic Chinese.[61] A section of the façade of the rebuilt "Chinese Store" that was in Chinatown is now housed at the Kelowna Museum.[62]

Homelessness[edit]

Women make up nearly half of Kelowna's homeless. In other Canadian cities, the overwhelming majority of homeless are males.[63]

On 12 May 2003, the Kelowna Homelessness Networking Group conducted a limited census, and enumerated 198 people: 54 individuals from the street and 144 individuals in shelters.[64]

On 24 February 2016, as part of the Government of Canada's Homelessness Partnering Strategy, the Central Okanagan Foundation conducted a coordinated Point-in-Time (PiT) Count of Kelowna's homeless population.[65] The survey found at least 233 people were homeless,[66] and another 273[67] were living in temporary housing.

Transportation[edit]

Kelowna faces severe suburbanization and urban sprawl promoted by the popularity of low-density car-oriented developments. As of 2007, Kelowna has the highest car dependency rate in Canada and has the second highest per-capita road transportation carbon footprint in British Columbia.[68] Despite having a metro population of about 200,000,[69] the greater Kelowna area is slightly bigger than that of Metro Vancouver. Road transportation accounts for more than 65% of total greenhouse gas emission in the city.[70]

Roads and highways[edit]

The city is served by Highway 97 and Highway 33.[71]

Public transport[edit]

Kelowna Regional Transit System is operated by FirstGroup, providing public bus transportation services in Kelowna and its vicinity. Funding for the transit system is shared between the City of Kelowna, Central Okanagan Regional District, District of Lake Country and BC Transit.[72]

Air travel[edit]

Kelowna International Airport (IATA: YLW), north of the city core, is one of the busiest airports in Canada. There are regular flights to and from Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto, Vancouver, Victoria, Cranbrook, Whitehorse, and Seattle, as well as seasonal service to Las Vegas, Phoenix, Cuba and Mexico. Three major airlines serve the airport; Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, and WestJet.

Local services[edit]

Emergency services are provided by the Kelowna General Hospital, the British Columbia Ambulance Service, Kelowna Fire Department, Central Okanagan Search and Rescue and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

Venues and attractions[edit]

Kelowna's welcome sign

Culture and sport[edit]

Kelowna Marina

Education[edit]

Post-secondary[edit]

Primary and secondary schools[edit]

Public schools in the Kelowna area are part of School District 23 Central Okanagan

The Conseil scolaire francophone de la Colombie-Britannique operates one Francophone school: école de l'Anse-au-sable primary and secondary school.[74]

Private schools

Public libraries[edit]

Crime[edit]

In February 2009 an RCMP gang task unit was approved to help deal with gang violence.[76]

Most crime in Kelowna is non-violent property crime.[77] In 2012, Kelowna had the highest reported crime rate in Canada: 8,875 per 100,000.[78] Police focused on crime in 2014, and Kelowna moved into the number four position across the country.[79] In 2015, RCMP Supt. Nick Romanchuk stated, "I am absolutely convinced that as our drug enforcement numbers increase, our overall crime rate will decrease."[80] As of 2016, the crime rate had returned to second highest in Canada.[81] In 2017, the property crime in Kelowna rate went up six percent, once again the highest rate in Canada, while the drug crime rate fell two percent.[82]

In 2013, 446 victims of domestic violence were reported in Kelowna, earning the city the highest per-capita rate of domestic violence in British Columbia and the tenth-highest across Canada. This was a slight drop compared to 2011, when Kelowna reported the fourth-highest rate nationally and led the province in family violence.[83]

In 2014, Kelowna, there were 251 marijuana charges per 100,000 population, the highest per capita rate in Canada.[84]

In 2012, Kelowna had the highest crime rate of any metropolitan area in Canada, mainly because of its property crime.[85] This increase has, however, been attributed[who?] mainly to the actions of a relative few known, prolific offenders. Illicit Drug use is high in the region. Between 2012 and 2016, Kelowna lead the country in cannabis, cocaine, and heroin possession.[86] As of 2016, the crime rate has declined to second highest.[81] In 2017, Kelowna had the highest opioid overdose rate in Canada.[87]

Notable people[edit]

Politicians[edit]

Military[edit]

Athletes[edit]

Entertainers[edit]

Authors[edit]

Accolade[edit]

On November 4, 2015, The Canadian Institute of Planners announced winners of its fifth annual Great Places in Canada contest. A jury of seven professional planners named Stuart Park as the Great Public Space. "The jury was won over by the multiple strengths of the park — its everyday use, community focus, unique reflection of local character and natural environment, accessibility for multi-generational activities, and the significant role it already plays as a Great Space in Kelowna."[88]

Sister cities[edit]

Kelowna has "sister city" agreements with the following cities:[89]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hall, Neal (27 August 2005). "Fruit drove Kelowna's early economy". Vancouver Sun.
  2. ^ a b c "Focus on Geography Series, 2016 Census". Statistics Canada. Statistics Canada. 23 April 2017. Retrieved 23 December 2017.
  3. ^ "Kelowna". Natural Resources Canada. 6 October 2016.
  4. ^ "Geographical Names of British Columbia". Nrcan.gc.ca. Archived from the original on 3 July 2013. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  5. ^ "Population and dwelling counts, for census metropolitan areas and census agglomerations, 2011 and 2006 censuses". 12.statcan.gc.ca. Retrieved 12 November 2016.
  6. ^ "Municipal and sub-provincial areas population, 2011 to 2019". BC Stats. Retrieved 5 February 2020.
  7. ^ George Ewonus, Paul Ewonus, James Baker (2004). "Chapter 8: Ancient Peoples of the Okanagan". In John D. Greenough, Murray A. Roed (ed.). Okanagan Geology. Kelowna Geology Committee. pp. 67–78. ISBN 0-9699795-2-5.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  8. ^ "City of Kelowna" (PDF). Government of British Columbia. 2006. Retrieved 10 March 2013.
  9. ^ Ryan, Denise (26 May 2008). "Opening of William R. Bennett Bridge in Kelowna". The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved 19 February 2019.
  10. ^ "Stubbs House". City of Kelowna.
  11. ^ John D. Greenough, Murray A. Roed, ed. (2004). "Chapter 1: History of Geological Studies in the Okanagan Valley". Okanagan Geology. Kelowna Geology Committee. pp. 11–14. ISBN 0-9699795-2-5.
  12. ^ Sonic boom smashes Kelowna's windows, Archival news footage after the sonic boom, CBC Digital Archives, Broadcast Date: 7 August 1969
  13. ^ Strachan, Brady, "It could be a lot colder: Kelowna historian remembers Okanagan Lake freezing over completely", CBC British Columbia, Retrieved on 2018-04-19.
  14. ^ [1] Archived 12 July 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  15. ^ "Okanagan Mountain Park Fire 2003". Castanet.firewatch.net. 1 April 2004. Archived from the original on 20 September 2005. Retrieved 5 May 2011.
  16. ^ Canadian wildfires force thousands to flee homes | Canada | Reuters. Ca.reuters.com (19 July 2009). Retrieved on 2011-02-20.
  17. ^ McElroy, Justin. "New wildfire east of Kelowna, B.C., forces more than 1,000 people from their homes". CBC British Columbia.
  18. ^ "Kelowna's Official Flower: The Arrowleaf Balsamroot". KelownaNow.com. Retrieved 25 May 2018.
  19. ^ "Canadian Climate Normals or Averages 1981-2010". Environment Canada. Retrieved 24 April 2014.
  20. ^ Kottek, M.; J. Grieser; C. Beck; B. Rudolf; F. Rubel (2006). "World Map of the Köppen-Geiger climate classification updated" (PDF). Meteorol. Z. 15 (3): 259–263. doi:10.1127/0941-2948/2006/0130. Retrieved 28 August 2012.
  21. ^ "Castanet • Kelowna IS Semi-Arid? - View topic". Forums.castanet.net. Retrieved 12 November 2016.
  22. ^ "Mildest Winters". Environment Canada. Archived from the original on 25 November 2011. Retrieved 25 October 2019.
  23. ^ "Daily Data Report for August 1998". Environment Canada. Archived from the original on 16 May 2013. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  24. ^ a b "Canadian Climate Normals 1981-2010 Station Data, Kelowna Airport". Environment Canada. Retrieved 15 July 2015.
  25. ^ Phillips, D. 1990. The Climate of Canada. Catalogue No. En56-1/1990E. Ottawa: Minister of Supply and Services of Canada
  26. ^ "Wind & weather statistics Kelowna Airport/Okanagan Lake - Windfinder". Windfinder.com. Retrieved 12 November 2016.
  27. ^ "Canadian Climate Information 1981-2010 KELOWNA A". Environment Canada. Retrieved 15 July 2015.
  28. ^ "Canadian Climate Data". Environment Canada. Retrieved 13 July 2016.
  29. ^ "Canadian Climate Data". Environment Canada. Retrieved 13 July 2016.
  30. ^ "Canadian Climate Data". Environment Canada. Retrieved 13 July 2016.
  31. ^ "Council Policy 247 - Hierarchy of Plans (Sector Plans/Structure Plans /Redevelopment Plans)" (PDF). City of Kelowna. City of Kelowna. 4 June 1996. Archived from the original (PDF) on 23 July 2017. Retrieved 15 May 2019. the City will undertake to prepare Sector Plans, at Council’s direction
  32. ^ "Sector Boundaries, Open Data Catalogue - City of Kelowna". City of Kelowna. City of Kelowna. Retrieved 31 October 2015.[permanent dead link]
  33. ^ Google Maps (4 October 2018). "Map of Abbott Street, Kelowna, BC, Canada". Google. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  34. ^ Nichols, Trevor (9 August 2016). "The problem in Kelowna's 'red zone'". Kelownanow.com. Retrieved 19 May 2017. It’s an area where many of the city’s most prolific criminal offenders hang out, and police constantly deal with drug trafficking, assaults and robberies there.
  35. ^ a b Hayes, Kelly (8 June 2007). "Red Zone Working: Cops". castanet. Retrieved 19 May 2017. The red-zone extends from Lake Okanagan to the West, Lake Avenue, Rowcliffe to Ethel and Ethel to Stockwell, Doyle and back to the lake.
  36. ^ McDonald, John (20 May 2016). "Red zone cleans up the streets but hinders recovery, addict says". Infotel.ca. Retrieved 7 July 2016. Reimer says he’s just an addict caught up in the spring sweep, an annual operation by police aimed at low-level street dealers and users where police make undercover buys and then arrest them.
  37. ^ McDonald, John (20 May 2016). "City councillor wants to know if red zone really keeps criminals out of downtown Kelowna". Infotel.ca. Retrieved 19 May 2017. Hodge says his own research shows the red zone in Kelowna was put in place in 1992, the direct result of surging street crime in the downtown core and demands from downtown businesses to do something about it.
  38. ^ Hayes, Kelly (9 June 2009). "RCMP doing some spring cleaning". castanet. Retrieved 31 May 2017. Head of the RCMP's Downtown Enforcement Unit, Mark Slade, says it's just the beginning.
  39. ^ "The History of Kelowna" (PDF). Learnforestry.com. Retrieved 27 December 2018.
  40. ^ Economic Impact of Tourism in Kelowna and the Greater Kelowna Area, B.C., InterVISTAS, 2 March 2017
  41. ^ "Example: Calona Vineyards – Awards – Artist Series Reserve VQA". Calonavineyards.ca. 6 January 1990. Archived from the original on 11 June 2011. Retrieved 5 May 2011.
  42. ^ Calona Private Reserve Archived 5 May 2009 at the Wayback Machine. Calonavineyards.ca (6 January 1990). Retrieved on 2011-02-20.
  43. ^ "Okanagan College Accountability Plan" (PDF). 7 July 2019.
  44. ^ University of British Columbia, Okanagan Campus (23 October 2012). Facts and Figures Archived 8 July 2012 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved on: 2013-02-07 UTC.
  45. ^ "6th Annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey: 2010" (PDF). Retrieved 5 May 2011.
  46. ^ The Okanagan, a Napa of the North Archived 3 January 2010 at the Wayback Machine, New York Times, 6 October 2006
  47. ^ "Flicka: Country Pride (Video 2012) - IMDb". IMDb.com. Retrieved 12 November 2016.
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  50. ^ "FlowRider® Double". Waveloch.com. Retrieved 27 December 2018.
  51. ^ Kelowna Community Profile – Statistics Canada. 2002. 2001 Community Profiles. Released 27 June 2002. Last modified: 2005-11-30. Statistics Canada Catalogue no. 93F0053XIE.
  52. ^ "Population, Age characteristics, Dwellings, Houses, Language, Education, Work, Industry, Earnings, Income, Immigration, Citizenship, Labor". City-data.com.
  53. ^ "About Kelowna". City of Kelowna. 19 May 2016. Retrieved 27 December 2018.
  54. ^ a b c The Changing Face of Kelowna: Report on Ethnicity and Ethnic Relations Archived 13 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine. (PDF) . Retrieved on 2011-02-20.
  55. ^ "Canada's population estimates: Subprovincial areas, July 1, 2015" (PDF). Statistics Canada. 10 February 2016. Retrieved 3 January 2017. In 2014/2015, the population growth rate was 2.0% or higher in four CMAs: Kelowna (+3.1%), Calgary (+2.4%), Edmonton (+2.4%) and Saskatoon (+2.0%).
  56. ^ "2011 National Household Survey: Religion (108)". Statistics Canada. Retrieved 19 December 2019.
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  58. ^ "Aboriginal Peoples - Data table". 2.statcan.ca. 6 October 2010. Retrieved 13 April 2013.
  59. ^ a b c "UBC students partner with City of Kelowna to recognize heritage sites" (Archive). University of British Columbia. 5 August 2010. Retrieved on 27 January 2015.
  60. ^ Hayes, Robert M. "Lum Lock and Quon Ho" (Archive). Kelowna Daily Courier. Circa March 2014. Retrieved on 27 January 2015.
  61. ^ a b Macauley, Thomas. "Old Kelowna Chinatown recognized as historic" (Archive). The Phoenix News. 18 October 2010. Retrieved on 26 January 2015.
  62. ^ "Heritage Building 1435 Water St - Chinese Store (Kelowna Museum, 470 Queensway) Archived 27 January 2015 at the Wayback Machine." City of Kelowna. Retrieved on 27 January 2015.
  63. ^ "Kelowna Homelessness Networking Group Report on the Census of Homeless Individuals in Kelowna Spring 2003" (PDF). Kelowna Homelessness Networking Group. Retrieved 22 May 2017. Women make up nearly half (48.1%) of Kelowna’s homeless, a somewhat surprising statistic. In most other cities, the overwhelming majority of homeless are males – in the most recent Calgary count, for example, only 16.5% of the over 1700 homeless individuals counted were females, meaning that, expressed as a percentage of total population, Kelowna’s female homeless population is almost three times as large as Calgary’s.
  64. ^ "Kelowna Homelessness Networking Group Report on the Census of Homeless Individuals in Kelowna Spring 2003" (PDF). Kelowna Homelessness Networking Group. Retrieved 22 May 2017. The census was conducted between the hours of 8:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 12, 2003. The weather that day was generally overcast and cool, with daytime highs of 5º C and lows dropping to –3º C in the evening.
  65. ^ Sharp, Paul. "Kelowna Point-in-Time Count: Community Report" (PDF). Central Okanagan Foundation. Retrieved 22 May 2017. The Kelowna PiT Count was conducted on the evening of February 24th, 2016. The average temperature during the day was 9°C, with a low of -4°C.
  66. ^ Sharp, Paul. "Kelowna Point-in-Time Count: Community Report" (PDF). Central Okanagan Foundation. Retrieved 22 May 2017. A total of 233 individuals were identified as being absolutely homeless with 164 (70%) experiencing sheltered homelessness and 69 (30%) experiencing unsheltered homelessness.
  67. ^ Sharp, Paul. "Kelowna Point-in-Time Count: Community Report" (PDF). Central Okanagan Foundation. Retrieved 22 May 2017. A total of 273 individuals were identified as being temporarily housed in interim housing (n=231) or institutional care (n=42).
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  70. ^ TAC Sustainable Urban Transportation Award Submission - Mahesh Tripathi
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  73. ^ "TeamPages: Okanagan All Stars - Okanagan All Stars". Okanaganallstars.com. Retrieved 12 November 2016.
  74. ^ "Carte des écoles." Conseil scolaire francophone de la Colombie-Britannique. Retrieved on 22 January 2015.
  75. ^ "Hours and Locations - Okanagan Regional Library (ORL)". Orl.bc.ca. Retrieved 27 December 2018.
  76. ^ Special unit needed to fight Kelowna gang war: RCMP – British Columbia – CBC News. Cbc.ca (28 January 2009). Retrieved on 2011-02-20.
  77. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 September 2015. Retrieved 1 January 2019.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  78. ^ "Police-reported crime statistics, 2012" (PDF). Statcan.gc.ca.
  79. ^ Canada, Government of Canada, Statistics. "Police-reported Crime Severity Index and crime rate, by census metropolitan area". Statcan.gc.ca.
  80. ^ Moore, Wayne. "Canada's drug capital". Castanet.net.
  81. ^ a b "Kelowna ranks #2 in crime stats". Global News. 21 July 2016. Retrieved 3 January 2017. It isn’t the crime capital of Canada but Kelowna is still near the top of the list.
  82. ^ Moore, Wayne. "Tops in property, drug crime". Castanet.net.
  83. ^ "Domestic violence capital of BC - Kelowna News". Castanet.net.
  84. ^ Police report a pot possession incident every 9 minutes in Canada – CBC News. Cbc.ca (Sep 30, 2015). Retrieved on 2016-05-17.
  85. ^ "Crime rate spikes in Kelowna". The Globe and Mail. 25 July 2013. Retrieved 26 August 2013.
  86. ^ Wayne Moore (1 October 2015). "Canada's drug capital". castanet. Retrieved 22 December 2017. Kelowna has been tops among the 34 cities in marijuana possession for the past three years. The city has also been the No. 1 city when it comes to cocaine possession cases in three of the past four years. Victoria topped the list in 2011. Cases of heroin possession have been steadily increasing in the Kelowna CMA since 2010. Kelowna has been No. 1 the past four years. Possession related cases have risen from 5.5 in 2010 to 34.7 in 2014.
  87. ^ "Frustration mounts over fentanyl response in Kelowna". CBC News. 24 October 2017. Retrieved 23 December 2017. In September, a report from the Canadian Institute for Health Information showed Kelowna had the highest rate of hospitalizations for opiod poisoning in all of Canada.
  88. ^ "And the Winners of Great Places in Canada 2015 are … | CIP". Cip-icu.ca. Archived from the original on 20 November 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2016.
  89. ^ "Sister Cities". Kelowna.ca. Retrieved 15 September 2019.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Extreme high and low temperatures were recorded near downtown Kelowna from March 1899 to September 1962, at Kelowna CDA from October 1962 to September 1968, at Kelowna International Airport from October 1968 to December 2013, and at University of British Columbia Okanagan from December 2013 to present.

External links[edit]