Would you like to subscribe to our newsletters?

Sign up here for our Newsletter!

Vernon looking at repeat of 30 Ave summer closure

Image Credit: FACEBOOK:Downtown Business Association

The City of Vernon could see one block of main street shut off to traffic again this summer.

Vernon council is scheduled to vote on whether to close off the 2900 block of 30 Avenue at its April 11 meeting.

According to a staff report, the Downtown Vernon Association conducted a survey whereby downtown businesses indicated general support for the closure of the block.

Council allocated $50,000 for the closure of the block in 2021, although the pilot program cost slightly less than half that amount.

The proposal to close two blocks of downtown Vernon was met with a certain level of controversy when the idea was pitched in 2021.

While support was strong from businesses in the 2900 block, only about 50 per cent of businesses in the 3000 block were on board. Ultimately, the City decided to just close the 2900 block instead of both blocks.

In 2021 the 2900 block initiative also faced unforeseen problems with the heat dome and then the smoke from the wildfire which kept people away.

In 2020 Kelowna closed four blocks of Bernard Avenue to traffic in an effort to help businesses expand patios and display racks during the early days of the pandemic.

The move was a huge success and parts of the downtown street found foot traffic had increased by 88 per cent over the previous year.

In 2021 several businesses lobbied Kelowna council asking for the street closure to be expanded and to run from May to October. Ultimately though, Kelowna kept with the July to September timeslot.

If the initiative goes ahead in Vernon the 2900 block will be closed to traffic from July 1 to Sept. 5.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Ben Bulmer or call (250) 309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

We welcome your comments and opinions on our stories but play nice. We won't censor or delete comments unless they contain off-topic statements or links, unnecessary vulgarity, false facts, spam or obviously fake profiles. If you have any concerns about what you see in comments, email the editor in the link above.