A petition has been launched to reopen Peace Arch Park after it was briefly reopened and then closed again on June 18.
The BC government said that the closure was intended to address “safety and traffic concerns” in neighbouring communities.
Since then, “parking lots and local access roads have been overwhelmed with nearly twice the number of vehicles compared to peak days in the summer season, resulting in illegal parking,” the provincial government said. “Attendance has doubled over the same period compared to last year, leading to an increase in pedestrians along roadways.”
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However, according to the petition, which has been signed over 2,000 times at the time of publication, many people are asking that the government reconsider this decision.
The petition, created by Megan Ferguson, says that the park is “one of the only places family members and loved ones can meet.”
“For example, engaged couples can no longer meet and cannot cross into Canada because they are not immediate family. I believe this park needs to stay open. If new protocols need to be enforced such as a reservation system so be it, but let families continue to reunite with one another.”
Many of the people who have signed the petition say that they hope to see the park reopened in order to meet with loved ones across the border, who are unable to come to Canada due to the current border closures.
The border closures are expected to stay in place until at least July 21, and BC officials say the park will reopen “when it is deemed safe to do so.”
With files from Eric Zimmer