As the days go on amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, more and more facilities are taking safety precautions and closing. The latest facilities to close in Vancouver are several of the city's public parks. According to an email sent to Narcity by the city, several Vancouver parks will close, starting on Tuesday, March 17. While most parks will be shutting down, some public amenities will remain open.
Narcity received a notice from the Park Board stating that significant operational measures are being taken in response to COVID-19. This includes the closing of all public facilities effective immediately.
These closures will be impacting all community centres and services connected to the Park Board with the exception of children's day camps and licensed childcare facilities.
While these few services will remain open, there will be no new registrations accepted.
The email specifies that all park pools, hot tubs, saunas, steam rooms, fitness centres, ice rinks, golf courses, and “pitch and putts” will be closed as of now.
In addition to these closures, tourist hotspots, including the VanDusen Botanical Garden, Bloedel Conservatory, Queen Elizabeth Park Celebration Pavilion, and the Stanley Park Info Booth and concessions will be closed immediately.
Any event or sporting game that was set to take place at any of the above facilities has been cancelled, and refunds will be offered to those impacted.
Even though parks themselves will be closed, certain amenities within them will remain open for the time being.
The Park Board has clarified with Narcity that public park washrooms and marinas will remain open at this time.
"While we recognize the closure of our facilities may provide challenges for many members of our community who rely on our services, we are prioritizing the well-being of the public and wider global community,” wrote the Park Board in an email.
The City of Vancouver has set up a special webpage for anyone interested in learning about the closures.
According to the webpage, over 100 facilities, including community centres, golf courses, and fitness centres are closed.
At this time, only 10 service buildings remain open.
These closures come just after the announcement that all downtown Vancouver bars and restaurants will be closing for St. Patrick’s Day.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently spoke about the COVID-19 pandemic, urging people to stay home.
Since more and more people are leaving their jobs ,either by free will or by imposition, BC Hydro is offering all customers the opportunity to defer bill payments due to financial strain from the pandemic.