A busy Bernard Avenue in downtown Kelowna on May 18, 2020. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Kelowna opens Bernard parking spaces for patio expansion

Full closure of Bernard still slated for this summer

The City of Kelowna is allowing Bernard Avenue restaurants to expand their patio spaces a little earlier than expected — but also a little less, for now.

The province recently extended COVID-19 provincial health orders barring indoor food and alcohol service through May long weekend, prompting pleas from local businesses for the city to bump up the start date of the ‘Meet Me on Bernard’ program. That initiative will see Bernard closed to vehicle traffic between the Sails and St. Paul Street, allowing patios and pedestrians to take over the street throughout the summer.

But the city is remaining firm on the program’s July 1 start date, with staff saying it needs to strike a balance between supporting local businesses while adhering to health guidelines.

Instead of expediting the full street closure, city staff proposed the use of parking stalls and sidewalk furnishing areas directly in front of local establishments be used for expanded patios for now.

“We feel this is a good compromise,” said Chris Babcock, the city’s event development supervisor.

While the change will limit on-street parking, stalls that aren’t utilized for patio expansion will remain available for parking. Staff said the change will have minimal traffic impact for vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians, meaning the city is able to immediately start accepting applications and setting up infrastructure for the program.

“What we really need to do now is to encourage people to go out and support our businesses as much as they can,” said Coun. Charlie Hodge.

“I encourage my DKA friends to hang in there until July, and hopefully this will make it better until then.”

Council gave its approval to the sidewalk seating program during a Monday, April 26, meeting.

READ MORE: Infant from Interior Health died from COVID-19, Coroner probe confirms

READ MORE: Mayor thinks Kelowna will be travel ‘hot spot’ this summer amid pent up demand

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email: michael.rodriguez@kelownacapnews.com


@michaelrdrguez
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

City of Kelowna

Just Posted

princess margaret
Penticton high school has COVID-19 exposure days

Princess Margaret Secondary had potential days of exposure May 10-12

Brandon Messier of Messier’s Concrete and Landscaping has added some unique, glowing features to his front yard at 28 Huth Ave. (Submitted)
PHOTOS: Glowing boulders popping up in Penticton yards

Local landscaper Brandon Messier also brought the Lost statue to its new home

There is nothing left of a structure that burned down in rural Summerland Saturday night. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Nothing left at fire scene in Summerland

Summerland firefighters arrived when the structure was fully engulfed in flames

Penticton city parks staff were busy this week using the beach grater to sift through sand, getting the shores ready for beach season. When it comes to beach clean up they are collecting run-off debris, pulling weeds and picking up litter. (Penticton photo)
Hottest day of the year, so far, in the South Okanagan

Penticton city park staff cleaned up the beaches getting ready for the season

Discovery House executive director Jerome Abraham in front of the third building, Parkers Place, for the addiction recovery program. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Discovery House opens Parkers Place in Penticton to provide transitionary care

The addiction recovery program is now able to provide support for as long as necessary

(Historica Canada)
VIDEO: Heritage Minute marks 100th anniversary of work to discover insulin

Video centres on Leonard Thompson, 13, the first patient to receive successful injections for Type 1 diabetes

(Lindsey Roche/Contributed)
Kelowna children enjoy drive-in movie thanks to support from the community

A daycare in the Mission area gets creative during the COVID-19 pandemic

Conservation Service Officer Kyle Bueckert holds a gold eagle that was revived from acute rodent poisoning Monday, May 12. Photo: Submitted
‘Obviously, he’s a fighter’: Golden eagle, recovered from poisoning, back in Kootenay wild

CSO Kyle Bueckert released the eagle into the wild Thursday, May 13

A fledgling white raven was spotted near the end of Winchester Road in Coombs. (Mike Yip photo)
Legend continues as iconic white raven spotted once again on Vancouver Island

Sightings rare everywhere in world except for central Vancouver Island location

Capt. Jenn Casey died in a crash just outside of Kamloops, B.C., on May 17, 2020. (CF Snowbirds)
Snowbirds to honour Capt. Casey, who died in B.C. crash, in 2021 tour

Tour will kick off in Ontario in June before heading west

This bird box at the Salmon Arm Foreshore lies broken on May 14, 2021 after someone pulled the pole out of the ground and smashed the formerly occupied nest. It was one of more than 30 that have been wrecked. (Martha Wickett-Salmon Arm Observer)
Destruction of nests, birds at Salmon Arm foreshore described as horrifying

More than 30 bird boxes made by community destroyed, just one was not occupied

Ranchero resident Cody Krabbendam proudly displays the Lifesaving Society awards he recently received for a rescuing another boy while swimming at Sicamous Beach in July 2020. (Contributed)
Shuswap boy receives medal of bravery, scholarship for rescue at Sicamous beach

Last summer Cody Krabbendam jumped into the lake to save another boy from drowning

A pedestrian wearing a mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 is bundled up for the cold weather as snow falls in downtown Vancouver on Saturday, February 13, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Snow possible in mountain passes as cold front hits southern B.C.

Much of B.C.’s southern interior will see temperatures plunge from highs of 30 C reached over the weekend

File photo (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Overturned kayak in Kelowna creek prompts police response

Kelowna RCMP is looking to speak with anyone who may know the individual associated with the kayak

Most Read