The Greater Vancouver Zoo is planning to reopen to the public on Monday at 9 a.m. after more than a month in shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic, a zoo spokesperson confirmed.
The announcement comes as phase two of B.C.’s Restart Plan gets underway June 1. Provincial parks and resorts will implement social distancing measures while open – to curb COVID-19 community spread.
To usher in the end to the Aldergrove’s facility shutdown, Darryl Plecas, Speaker of the Legislative assembly, will say a few words.
Joining him will be general manager, Serge Lussier, and animal care manager, Menita Prasad, of the zoo.
Full details, including new health-related guidelines to be followed at the wildlife park, can be found on its website.
“For the indefinite future,” the zoo will be a “predominantly one-way experience, clearly marked and outlined” with paw prints on the ground to promote six-feet of social distance and lines painted two-metres apart for admission and train lineups.
The remaining 10 per cent of the zoo’s foot traffic will be in two directions, “but only on roads four-metres wide to allow for bi-directional traffic to remain tw0 metres apart,” according to the zoo’s reopening plan.
Zoo keeper talks, its playground, North American Wilds viewing deck, and vivarium will remain closed – along with all other group activities.
Staff will “wear risk-appropriate masks, face shields, and gloves whenever in a public part of the zoo or in view of a public area, when their work will always not enable them to social distance,” as outlined in the reopening plan.
For them, there will be separate staff rooms based upon their department.
Guests will not be required to wear masks for entry to the zoo, though they are recommended and will be available for purchase on site.
Sanitization stations will be available for public use at all high points of contact, including railings and the admissions area.
“We are taking every precaution we can to make the GV Zoo the safest location you can bring your family,” the zoo posted publicly.