KAMLOOPS — After six years on city council, Ken Christian is taking a shot at the mayor's seat.
"I think it's about building relationships," Christian said. "I think the relationship a mayor has is with the citizens of Kamloops and certainly with council. You're not going to get anything done without the consensus of the majority of council, and I've worked with all of the councillors and understand their positions and where they come from."
In addition to his council experience, Christian believes his work with numerous politicians and community organizations will help him effectively lead the city.
"I've devoted the last 24 years to serving the city, 18 years as a school trustee, and the last six years on Kamloops City Council," Christian said. "I would really like the opportunity to provide leadership to council, and leadership to the city, and I think that my resume has prepared me for that task."
Some of Christian's top priorities for Kamloops include moving ahead with the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project and starting construction on the new Patient Care Tower at Royal Inland Hospital.
"That's a $417 million project that will be the single largest project in the city's history, so that's certainly one (priority). I think that will bring with it our ability to deal with some of the things like physician shortages, and those kinds of things."
Christian says Kamloops is positioned well to take advantage of high housing costs in the Lower Mainland, adding there is room for this city to expand.
"There would be about 45 per cent of our growth in the southwest sector," Christian said. "We've already got the capacity in that area in terms of our road carrying capacity, we've got larger reservoires, we've got increased capacity in our storm and sanitory sewer system, so that is already there and it's staged well for that to have some growth."
Although the Sept. 30 vote for mayor is a by-election, Christian feels he's the right person to fill the position for years to come.
"I would be happy to lead the city of Kamloops for the next year and beyond."
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