As we approach the summer of 2024, we can reflect on what has been a year of change, emerging from the global pandemic and the still-rippling effects on our economies and communities.  In our region, as an echo of what is happening around the province and country, we have seen the cost of housing rise dramatically, soaring food prices, a positive trend in our tourism economy, and both existing and emerging businesses doing their best to pivot and respond to the new reality.

At the Nakusp and Area Development Board (NADB), our volunteer members and professional staff have been working to address these towering challenges that face our community.  Through all of these pathways and others, NADB continues to lay the groundwork for a vibrant and sustainable community for decades to come.

Since last Fall, we have been engaging with the residents and leaders of Nakusp and Area to find the best way to meet the twin obstacles of a housing shortage and limited commercial opportunities due to the lack of a workforce, which led to a comprehensive survey of the community.  You can find the results here:  Out of this engagement, we have created the Upper Arrow Housing Society to create short- and long-term solutions that will provide increased workforce housing options for the community.  We have only just begun, so stay tuned for some exciting announcements in the near future.  In the meantime, you can support us by speaking to your business community, non-profit sector, and elected officials about the importance and urgent need for resources to address this crisis.

Our Agriculture Committee, led by the tireless Mickey Wojnarowski of Homegrown Market, has been promoting the local food industry through Grow Arrow Lakes ( since last summer, and they have been working on bringing the Basin Food and Buyers Expo (FABx –, a major regional food event, to our community this fall.  Local food security and the fragility of supply chains is top-of-mind for our members, and developing a resilient and sustainable food system for our Valley is one of our goals.

Building off the work we finished last Fall, we have been actively pursuing funding for the implementation of our Signage and Wayfinding Plan for the Village of Nakusp.  As an increasing number of tourists discover our region and as more newcomers move to our beautiful area, we are attempting to demystify local wayfinding and break down the proprietary knowledge-barriers that are exclusive of people new to the region.  Living in a small town like ours, we sometimes forget that not everyone grew up here or knows about everything that our village has to offer.

Tourism businesses, along with resource companies and nearly every other sector, have had to adapt to an ever-changing regulatory and economic landscape, and we have been providing business advisory services free-of-charge to local companies, organizations, and start-ups since 2021.  The demand for this service has been steadily increasing, and our business advisor, Dawn Driscoll, has been doing stellar work throughout the community, helping over 50 locals over the past year with everything from human resources to marketing to grant-writing.  Please reach out to set up your own personalized support session:

As some of us prepare to take time off over the summer and some of us gear up for our busiest season of the year, we all have one thing that we can agree on: Nakusp and the Upper Arrow Lakes Valley is a special place—beautiful and unique—but most of all, it is home.  NADB continues to do the work to make it a thriving region, a vibrant and healthy place to live and raise a family, and a sustainable community.

We couldn’t do this work without the support of the residents of our area, the Village of Nakusp, RDCK Area K, the Province of BC, the Economic Trust of the Southern Interior (ETSI-BC), the Columbia Basin Trust (CBT), and—of course—our dedicated volunteer members and diligent staff.  Thank you for all your support.