A master plan has been made for Kelowna’s Mission Creek to restore it to its meandering natural form before it was turned into a channel in the 1950s.
“What we’re doing is re-creating the habitat that was lost and the floodplains which we have recreated here are really interesting places. They change and develop, they provide a habitat for some of our rare and disappearing species,” said Don Knox with Friends of Mission Creek and Central Okanagan Land Trust.
The multi-phase initiative is a collaboration between the B.C. Ministry of Forests, Lands, and Natural Resources, the Central Okanagan Land Trust, the City of Kelowna, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Friends of Mission Creek, Okanagan Nation Alliance, Regional District of Central Okanagan and the Westbank First Nation.
Mission Creek Restoration Initiative
Since 2008 the many partners of the Mission Creek Restoration initiative have worked to protect the creek and now they have created a master plan that will help them access funding to continue their restorative efforts.
“The master plan is a plan that addresses the reality of the creek. There are built-up areas where it’s not likely we’re going to be able to do much there, there are slope issues up against the bank where we won’t be able to do much there,” said Knox.
“It’s identifying those places we can actually do work and expand the creek and that’s what the plan does, it says this area this is what’s happening and this is what we recommend.”
Knox says next year they are hoping to do some work near the end of Hollywood Road South along the Mission Creek Greenway and in Mission Creek Park.
“We are trying to get a couple of projects done in 2023 and so we identify two places to put in riffles and those are rock structures in the creek that help stabilize the creek bottom and also improve the habitat for the Kokanee [Salmon] which is one of our main goals,” said Knox.
The entire master plan is available to the public and can be viewed on the Mission Creek Restoration Initiative’s website and this is just the start of their long-term project that could take decades to complete.
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