Stanley Park will be closed overnight to reduce the risk of fire in the extremely hot and dry conditions caused by the heat wave.
The Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation has announced that it will temporarily close all non-essential access to the city's largest park on Friday (July 30) at 10 p.m. through Saturday (July 31) at 6 a.m., explains a news release.
While there might be some precipitation in Metro Vancouver this weekend, a heat warning is still in effect. Environment Canada's heat warning notes that a ridge of high pressure will lead to elevated temperatures Friday in the region through Saturday night.
“The current conditions in Stanley Park are extreme right now and given the size of the park, the risk of a fire breaking out overnight when fewer people may notice it or report it presents a significant threat to the wellbeing of the park, its trees, wildlife, and everyone who relies on the park and its ongoing health,” said Amit Gandha, Director of Park Operations.
Temporary overnight access control points
Park Rangers will set up temporary overnight access control points at five locations across the park to reduce the number of individuals in the park overnight. Vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, and anyone who does not require access to the park will be turned around at access control points.
"Anyone requiring entry into the park during the closure, including the #19 bus, emergency services, patrons, and staff of park businesses, will be permitted to enter through the control points. Individuals who remain in the park after the closure begins will have unrestricted access to leave the park through the control points," explains the Park Board.
The access control points will be positioned at the following locations:
- Traffic circle off Georgia St
- The corner of Barclay and Lagoon Drive
- The corner of Beach Ave and Park Lane
- The south exit of the Stanley Park Causeway
- The north exit of the Stanley Park Causeway
The Causeway will remain open but access to the seawall will be closed. The Park Board will place signage at access points to the seawall to advise pedestrians and cyclists of the closure. Park Rangers will also patrol the park overnight to monitor activity.
The temporary closure will be in effect seven days a week beginning Friday, July 30 and will extend indefinitely until the fire risk has been significantly reduced.