Ahead of the long Canada Day holiday weekend, with sunny skies in the forecast, the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation has issued a warning to people who plan on visiting popular local parks like Stanley Park, English Bay, John Hendry (Trout Lake), Kitsilano Beach, Sunset Beach and Queen Elizabeth Park to expect traffic congestion, delays, and parking shortages.
The notice from the Parks Board is not only to notify locals and tourists that there will be parking interruptions and road closures impacting high-traffic areas but also to remind people to be kind and patient with one another if things get busy or delayed.
Stanley Park interruptions
The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra will be performing a Symphony and Sunset concert at Sunset Beach on Saturday, July 2 and over 10,000 people are expected to be in attendance. Event set up and tear down will be taking place from Friday, July 1, through Sunday, July 3, and access to Sunset Beach Park will be impacted.
Beach avenue between Thurlow and Jervis will be closed from 8:30 and 10 p.m. and the washrooms at the Sunset Beach Concession will be closed from 2 p.m. onward. Alcohol consumption is also not permitted at the event.
No parking zones will be in effect at the 1200 block of Beach Ave, between Jervis and Bute, from noon to 10 p.m., while between 7:30 and 10 p.m. there is no parking on the 1100 block of Beach Ave, between Bute and Thurlow and the 1400 block of Bute St, between Pacific and Beach.
Additional signage will be in place at Stanley Park this weekend to aid people with the expected spike in traffic congestion but the Parks Board is asking people to avoid driving if they can and consider other modes of transport.
Other park concerns
The Parks Board also wants to remind visitors that smoking is not permitted in the parks and that while they are increasing the number of trash bins and sanitation staff over the weekend they expect people to clean up after themselves and take trash with them when they leave.
Over the course of the pandemic, it's reported that park use by residents has skyrocketed and the combination of the return of tourists and a long weekend has the city concerned for the weekend ahead. Consuming alcohol on any beach remains prohibited but there are designated areas in 22 parks where drinking is permitted and a list can be found here.