TRU unveils 'The Reach,' Kamloops' newest urban neighbourhood

By Tanya Cronin / Chad Harris
September 19, 2016 - 11:32am Updated: December 23, 2016 - 6:11am

KAMLOOPS — Plans for the first ever community on a university campus in the Interior - was unveiled at Thompson Rivers University this morning.

'The Reach' is a university village concept which envisions a vibrant campus neighbourhood transforming TRU from an often deserted campus on evenings and weekends into a 24-7 community.

The school has 90-developable acres and will combine office, retail and residential space.\

WATCH: Full report by Tanya Cronin

It's designed to be a vibrant neighbourhood where you can live, work, study and play 24-7. A village on the campus of Thompson Rivers University.

Vice President of Advancement at TRU Christopher Seguin says "this is the beginning of a new chapter in our history and we're all very excited."

TRU has unveiled plans for the first phase of 'The Reach', the first ever community on a university campus in the Interior of BC. 

With 90-developable acres the concept features residential living space, office and retail space, a hotel, urban market and pharmacy creating a round the clock campus.

"A lot of different people will choose to live on this campus, some students, some graduate students, faculty, staff, but people outside the university in the community are welcome to come here because it will be a great environment and great vital kind of life," explained Alan Shaver, President of TRU.

Similar to planned campus neighbourhoods at UBC and SFU 'The Reach' is designed to enhance the TRU experience and bring more people to Kamloops, transforming not only the university but the city as well.

Kamloops Councillor Ken Christian told CFJC Today, "this is going to make TRU a very attractive option for students from throughout North America and beyond, and enhance Kamloops as we develop from a resource-based economy to a knowledge based economy."

The project is being done through the TRU's Community Trust.

The land will be leased to developers and the revenue generated will go back into supporting students, through bursaries and scholarships.

"The fact they're going to come here and drive the economy for a period of 4 to 5 to 8 years is very significant, and with the rotation of students and student population building on the strength of these kinds of amenities, it bodes well for Kamloops' future," said Christian.

Kamloops-North Thompson MLA Terry Lake added "I think the name of the development 'The Reach' is so appropriate, when you think about trying to live in a really nice environment in the Lower Mainland we know that's out of reach, in Kamloops it's within reach."

TRU has put the project out to tender and hopes to break ground 12 months from now.

"We do think that within a year, we will have our project underway, I can't tell you how far underway, but I'm very confident it's going to be taken up," said Shaver.

The Reach – at a glance:

  • 90 developable acres
  • 3 million sq. ft. of new, urban residential living space to be developed
  • 40,000 sq. ft. of new office space to be developed
  • 78,000 sq. ft. of new retail space to be developed
  • Future site of hotel, urban market, pharmacy
  • Featuring integrated outdoor public spaces connected by pedestrian-only and dedicated cycle paths

Yet another huge development proposed for McGill corridor