Evacuation of Kelowna apartment extended for two weeks

More than 80 residents from a low-income apartment building in Kelowna have learned they won’t be able to return to their homes for at least another two weeks. 

Hadgraft Wilson Place was evacuated Tuesday because of concerns over construction activity at nearby University of British Columbia-Okanagan. 

B.C. Housing said recent geotechnical and structural engineering reports showed a shoring wall at the university site is unstable, and a slip “could cause serious structural damage” to the apartment building.

Pathways Abilities Society, which operates the building, says in a statement that frustrations continue to mount for the residents who were told they would be out for a few days and now that’s been extended for at least two weeks. 

Pathways website says Hadgraft Wilson Place is geared towards people with limited income or disabilities. 

Executive director Charisse Daley says the latest news is devastating, putting additional strain on everyone, especially their residents who require very specific supports for their disabilities. 

“Now their lives have been turned upside down and they are navigating the stress of not knowing how long it will be before they get to return to their homes,” said Daley. 

“It’s heartbreaking,” she added. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 5, 2024. 

The Canadian Press