An independent appraisal of the Crown lands identified as potential exchange lands with Westbank First Nation as part of the Westside Road interchange project has been released. This independent appraisal values the lands at $6.18 million.
The appraisal was undertaken in response to requests from Ben Stewart, MLA Westside-Kelowna, and members of the public for a professional, independent review of the land value. The report confirms the findings of an earlier appraisal commissioned by the Westbank First Nation. The two valuations are within five per cent of each other.
A professional appraisal is just one of the required steps in the land transfer process. As is the case with all government-to-government land exchanges, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure is required to evaluate the potential impacts of the land transfer on the watershed, park and other land interests and ensure all impacts will be addressed. A final decision on the proposed Crown land transfer requires approval of the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations as well as the Government of Canada.
The four parcels of undeveloped Crown land located in the Bear Creek and Rose Valley areas were identified by the Westbank First Nation as potential replacement lands for commercially zoned reserve lands required by the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure for construction of the Westside Road interchange.
A summary of appraisal findings can be viewed at: http://www.th.gov.bc.ca/publications/reports_and_studies/index.htm
Westbank First Nation has agreed to release a summary of the land valuations from the original appraisal. A summary of these findings can be viewed at: http://www.wfn.ca/newsreleases.htm
Government Communications and Public Engagement
Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure