The extensive use of wood in the new marina has created a contemporary warmth that seems to have resonated well with a lot of residents and visitors. Perhaps it is because while the new structures are modern in their look and feel, wood is the anchor to the past because of its historic use on the waterfront.
Completed in 2013, this project, which includes a 68 slip itinerant marina and floating pedestrian pier, adds a new dimension to the aesthetics and experience of Kelowna's downtown waterfront. The marina is the result of a public/private initiative between the City of Kelowna, which donated the water-lot lease, and Westcorp, who will own and operate the marina for the next 20 years. This arrangement enabled a long sought-after public amenity to be realized without any burden to local taxpayers. In addition to the boat slips and pier (which extends 120 metres into Okanagan Lake), the project includes two marina operations buildings (fuel and rental sales), a seating pavilion at the pier's terminus, and a commercial pier and associated ticket building to accommodate 7 commercial boats.
Wood was used in almost all aspects of construction, including the three small marina operations buildings, the floating pier and the pedestrian seating pavilion. The use of wood allowed the pier and marina to both complement Bernard Avenue's recently completed streetscape, and blend seamlessly into the picturesque scenery and landscape. Constructed on specially designed barges, the buildings complement the existing waterfront context.