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Vancouver park board will allow drinking in parks as soon as province allows it

Looks like Vancouver will likely see parks and recreational drinking this summer

The city will let people drink in parks, just as soon as the province says ok.

That's the decision from the Vancouver Board of Parks. Last night (May 31) commissioners voted to enact their bylaw amendment which, while sounding boring, means people will be allowed to drink in some Vancouver parks this summer. It's a pilot program and while no start date has been set, it'll end October 11, 2021.

However, the amendment requires the province to say it's ok, first, in a vote at the B.C. legislature. A bill currently being debated in Victoria includes its own amendment right at the bottom which will give the park board authorization to make the amendment they just voted in favour of Monday.

While that's drier than a muscadet in the desert, it does mean people may be allowed to drink in Vancouver parks soon. The spring sitting is due to wrap up June 17.

However, it won't mean drinking in all the parks, or even all of some of the parks. Parks staff have picked 22 across the city. In those parks there are designated areas marked by signs. Those parks are:

  • Collingwood Park
  • David Lam Park
  • Fraser River Park
  • Granville Park
  • Harbour Green Park
  • John Hendry (Trout Lake) Park
  • Kitsilano Beach Park
  • Langara Park
  • Locarno Beach Park
  • Maple Grove Park
  • Memorial West Park
  • Memorial South Park
  • New Brighton Park
  • Pandora Park
  • Queen Elizabeth Park
  • Quilchena Park
  • Riverfront Park
  • Robson Park
  • Rupert Park
  • Stanley Park
  • Vanier Park
  • Volunteer Park

Some will have more than one area. All will be marked with signs. Examples of the park boundaries are above, which dodge around sports fields, playgrounds and parking lots.

Drinking will also be restricted to between the hours of 11 a.m. and 9 p.m.

The motion passed with six of the seven board members voting in favour; Commissioner John Irwin abstained.