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Temporary Closures Underway

Measures mitigate wildfire risk, says Council

Lions Bay parking lots and visitor street parking were closed down today, as Village Public Works staff have been quick to implement the decision made at Tuesday's special meeting of Council. In a press release issued on August 24, Council ordered visitor parking and trailhead lots closed due to the high risk of wildfire, exacerbated by the municipality's ongoing water shortage. Water restrictions are currently at Level 2 in the village.


Friday's Village Update contained a further message from Council, noting that under current conditions, "low creek supply means that our tanks will not refill fast enough to fight wildfire spreading into the Village for any prolonged period," and outlining the temporary measures that have been put into place.


Parking lots around the village, including below the school, at Lions Bay and Kelvin Grove Beach parks and Sunset Trailhead have been closed, and meters covered. Former street parking on Mountain and Bayview has been signed No Parking, and large signs indicating closed trail access have been erected at all the entrances to the village off the Sea to Sky highway.


"We've had ongoing background discussions of the possibility of these closures in Council, as well as at Emergency Program committee meetings earlier in the year," said Councillor Marcus Reuter earlier today. "But it is the devastation we're all witnessing in real time in the Interior this summer that prompted this discussion at the meeting on Tuesday."


When asked if Council actions were spurred by the letter signed by more than 60 residents and submitted during Tuesday's meeting, Reuter responded: "The topic was already on the agenda, publicly posted before we received the letter at the meeting. This is a Council-led initiative. It's clear the posting of the item discussing trail access is what inspired the letter in the first place."


The council message in Friday's Village Update notes that the measures put in place will be reviewed and removed when the risk of wildfire has passed.


Sunset Trailhead parking lot before the shut-down on August 23, and after on August 25.

Thoughts about the trailhead closures? The Watershed values your opinion. Leave your comments below, or email editor@lionsbaywatershed.ca.



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