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Coronavirus: City of Kelowna to close 10 facilities

Click to play video: 'Kelowna, B.C., mayor announces closure of 10 facilities due to coronavirus concerns' Kelowna, B.C., mayor announces closure of 10 facilities due to coronavirus concerns
The mayor of Kelowna, B.C., announced on Tuesday that the city will be closing 10 facilities because of coronavirus concerns – Mar 17, 2020

The City of Kelowna says it will be closing 10 facilities to help slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

Mayor Colin Basran made the announcement on Tuesday at noon just outside of city hall.

In making the decision, Basran said the closures will take effect at the end of Tuesday, and that they come following the direction of B.C.’s medical health authorities on Monday to prohibit gatherings of 50 or more people.

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“Our top priority remains the health and safety of our employees and public and have and will continue to follow the advice of the medical health officer,” said Basran.

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“Staff, Council and I are very aware this will affect many people in many ways. However, we all need to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 to lessen the impact on our healthcare system.”

Below are the impacted facilities

  • Parkinson Recreation Centre
  • Kelowna Community Theatre
  • Black Box Theatre
  • Rutland Arena
  • Memorial Arena
  • Rutland Activity Centre
  • Parkinson Activity Centre
  • Okanagan Mission Activity Centre
  • Kinsmen Fieldhouse Hall
  • Mission Media Centre
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Basran added Tuesday’s decision included erring on the side of caution.

“We are dealing with a rapidly changing situation that even public health professionals find challenging to keep up with,” said Basran.

“This is new territory for everyone and we continue to listen to the direction of the B.C. medical health officer and take local action to balance the public’s best interests.

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“We are mindful of the impact on the livelihood of people who provide these programs and services, but our ultimate responsibility needs to be focused on what we must do to preserve public safety.”

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Other Kelowna facility closures

In related news, the YMCA of Okanagan announced that it has closed its health, fitness and aquatic centres.

The affected facilities, which will be closed until further notice, are the Kelowna Family Y, the Downtown YMCA and the H2O Adventure and Fitness Centre.

“With the global crisis surrounding COVID-19 and the threat locally, we must ensure the health and safety of our staff and community members,” said YMCA of Okanagan CEO Sharon Peterson.

“We are not making this decision lightly as it directly affects over 17,000 members and program participants, plus our many staff and volunteers. As a people-first organization, we will be supporting our teams through this difficult period.”

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The Kelowna Art Gallery also said it has made the decision to close its doors because of coronavirus concerns.

The art gallery will be closed after 5 p.m., on Tuesday, and that previously scheduled programs and events will be postponed until further notice.

 

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