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Downtown Vernon block re-opens to traffic after wildfires force plaza closure

Seasonal 2900 Plaza on 30th Avenue reopens to traffic Monday, Aug. 21
City of Vernon crews are removing the final items from the 2900 Plaza pedestrian corridor on 30th Avenue Monday, Aug. 21. The Downtown Vernon Association made the decision Sunday, Aug. 20, on an early closure of the seasonal plaza due to wildfires and air quality. (Wayne Emde photo)

Traffic is back to regular in the 2900 block of Vernon’s 30th Avenue.

City of Vernon crews have worked to remove a number of items following the closure of the 2900 Plaza for the summer season.

The Downtown Vernon Association (DVA) made the announcement on Sunday, Aug. 20, that the plaza will be closing earlier than anticipated, due to social and environmental impacts from wildfires in the region.

“Considering we cancelled Plaza operations four out of the last five days, and with no reprieve from the smoke in sight, it’s not logical to reopen the block,” said DVA executive director Keelan Murtagh. “This is an exceptionally difficult and disappointing decision to make; however, the DVA believes it is the correct course of action.

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to everyone who’s been affected by these historic wildfires.”

The auction is still on for 14 hand-painted adirondack chairs. Funds raised will go to each local artist. To bid on a chair until Aug. 28, visit

As part of the work to clear the area, crews removed picnic tables and umbrellas, planters, mobility access ramps, barricades, and detour traffic signage and materials.

READ MORE: Two Okanagan homeless shelters evacuated due to wildfires

READ MORE: Firefighting equipment stolen including ATVs in North Shuswap

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Roger Knox

About the Author: Roger Knox

I am a journalist with more than 30 years of experience in the industry. I started my career in radio and have spent the last 21 years working with Black Press Media.
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