Knox Mountain Park Management Plan Update 2022

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Please note: This engagement is now closed.

The Knox Mountain Management Plan update was endorsed by Council on Monday, June 20, 2022 and will guide capital investment priorities and operational strategies planned through the next ten years. As part of the update, residents were invited to weigh in through poll questions and a discussion forum, and it was inclusive of an updated analysis on the ecological needs of the park, and other information such as fire mitigation and overall maintenance throughout the next decade. Please read the engagement summary to find out what we heard.

As part of the process of updating the 10-year strategy, a survey about citizens’ experience accessing and using Knox Mountain Drive was completed in 2021. Based on the results, a multi-modal strategy has been implemented for a two-year pilot period. Review the engagement summary to see the results and key findings from the survey from more than 8,000 respondents.

It was important to align the changes with the vision and strategic goals for Knox Mountain Park in the update. Improvements will be primarily focused on the first lookout, such as the addition of a permanent washroom, parking layout, and mobility improvements. Parking and staging area improvements are also being prioritized for Knox Mountain East.

The vision and strategic goals for the Knox Mountain Park Management Plan were developed in 2011 based on public involvement, consultation with City of Kelowna representatives, and research on best practices for the management of natural area parks. The vision conveys the direction for the park, guides the nature of decisions affecting it, motivates those responsible for implementation, and shapes the public’s understanding of why they should work to achieve the strategic goals.

Vision

Knox Mountain Park reveals the wonder and diversity of the Okanagan landscape. It is a symbol of Kelowna, a place of unique and remarkable natural beauty within our city’s park system, a place where nature is able to flourish and evolve. Residents and visitors participate in the life of the park, establishing healthy and sustainable relationships between themselves and the natural environment.

Strategic Goals

The strategic goals are organized into three categories:

  • A Place for Nature
  • A Place for People
  • A Place for Stewardship

What’s changed?

While much of the existing 2011 plan continues to be relevant for the future, the revised version:

  • Includes an updated analysis on the ecological needs of the park
  • Prioritizes capital improvements
  • Guides maintenance, enhancement, and protection activities in the park

Please note: This engagement is now closed.

The Knox Mountain Management Plan update was endorsed by Council on Monday, June 20, 2022 and will guide capital investment priorities and operational strategies planned through the next ten years. As part of the update, residents were invited to weigh in through poll questions and a discussion forum, and it was inclusive of an updated analysis on the ecological needs of the park, and other information such as fire mitigation and overall maintenance throughout the next decade. Please read the engagement summary to find out what we heard.

As part of the process of updating the 10-year strategy, a survey about citizens’ experience accessing and using Knox Mountain Drive was completed in 2021. Based on the results, a multi-modal strategy has been implemented for a two-year pilot period. Review the engagement summary to see the results and key findings from the survey from more than 8,000 respondents.

It was important to align the changes with the vision and strategic goals for Knox Mountain Park in the update. Improvements will be primarily focused on the first lookout, such as the addition of a permanent washroom, parking layout, and mobility improvements. Parking and staging area improvements are also being prioritized for Knox Mountain East.

The vision and strategic goals for the Knox Mountain Park Management Plan were developed in 2011 based on public involvement, consultation with City of Kelowna representatives, and research on best practices for the management of natural area parks. The vision conveys the direction for the park, guides the nature of decisions affecting it, motivates those responsible for implementation, and shapes the public’s understanding of why they should work to achieve the strategic goals.

Vision

Knox Mountain Park reveals the wonder and diversity of the Okanagan landscape. It is a symbol of Kelowna, a place of unique and remarkable natural beauty within our city’s park system, a place where nature is able to flourish and evolve. Residents and visitors participate in the life of the park, establishing healthy and sustainable relationships between themselves and the natural environment.

Strategic Goals

The strategic goals are organized into three categories:

  • A Place for Nature
  • A Place for People
  • A Place for Stewardship

What’s changed?

While much of the existing 2011 plan continues to be relevant for the future, the revised version:

  • Includes an updated analysis on the ecological needs of the park
  • Prioritizes capital improvements
  • Guides maintenance, enhancement, and protection activities in the park
  • What We've Done

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    Accessibility to Knox Mountain Park is a main priority for both residents and the City to ensure everyone's enjoyment; therefore, trail access management has been a focus through the years.

    Here is a quick snapshot of some of the updates the park has seen:

    Access Management

    • Paul’s Tomb Trail – widening for emergency vehicles
    • Apex Trail – access management
    • Ogopogo Trail – step replacement
    • Shale Trail - mountain biking trail improvements
    • Overflow Parking – Poplar Point Drive

    Projects

    • Signage program
    • Toilets at first lookout and Ellis entrance (2022)
    • Improve Knox East parking
    • Trail improvements throughout

    It's been a decade at Knox Mountain Park and so much has happened. We can’t wait to see what the next 10 years brings!

  • Multi-Modal Strategy

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    Multi-Modal Strategy

    Knox Mountain Drive is enjoyed by many different user groups with many different preferences; therefore, the goal has been to accommodate as many of those preferences as possible, while ensuring everyone’s safety.

    In November 2021, Council endorsed a ‘Share the Road’ approach.

    The two-year trial will allow public vehicles access to the First Lookout, daily from noon to 8pm. The road will continue to be closed fully to vehicles during the winter months and periods of extreme fire danger. Staff will monitor vehicle counts, as well as pedestrian/cyclist counts at select locations in the park.

    Knox Mountain Drive road surface is less than 5.5m wide though much of its length and grading can reach over 20 per cent rendering it a challenging climb to some. The road is used by many users including vehicles, mountain and road cyclists, pedestrians, and long boarders. User counts are ~60% increased use at the Apex Trail from 2020 to 2021.


    Table 1 – Pedestrian Counts – Apex Trail 2020 to 2021

    Survey Results

    An online survey to better understand how people use and access the park was conducted in the spring of 2021. The survey response was significant, with over 8,100 responses and over 4,000 comments. The overall highest rated option was to keep vehicular access open to the First Lookout. Review the engagement summary to see the results and key themes.

    Implementation – Two-year Trial

    It is physically, economically, and ecologically unfeasible to create a standard multi-modal roadway; therefore, the objectives for the Knox Mountain Drive Strategy are safety, accessibility, and operational considerations. It is a park drive and requires management and use restrictions to reflect its context and constraints.

    The strategy takes into consideration the survey results as well as operational considerations, current use data, technical road standards and transportation safety principles. Events will be allowed with a permit and a pilot car.

    First Lookout

    Vehicle access to the First Lookout was chosen for a number of reasons:

    • Views over the City are immediately available from the First Lookout parking lot
    • Existing parking at the First Lookout.
    • Multiple options for alternate hiking and cycling routes to the First Lookout
    • Option was most favoured in the public engagement survey

    Monitoring Results

    Staff will monitor results of the Two-Year Strategy, including:

    • Vehicle counts
    • Pedestrian counts at select locations
    • Special event permits
    • Public and operational feedback
Page last updated: 06 Jul 2022, 03:04 PM