Mayor Naheed Nenshi made a pretty big announcement today regarding the downtown area, folks! Earlier this month, businesses smaller in square footage were given the green light to expand their spaces into the streets to better allow physical distancing. Now, because of this, the city has decided to close Stephen Avenue off to all traffic after 11 am.

This will go into effect tomorrow Friday, May 29th, and continue on through the summer months. Fortunately for cyclists, bikes will still be allowed through the area.

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Understandably, because several businesses are still operating exclusively through pick-up or delivery systems, this could not be done all day. That said, Nenshi hopes that allowing vehicular traffic from the early morning to 11 am will give them time to continue their work while helping others open their temporary ‘patios.’

“I want to very, very, very clear, this is not a street festival. This is not a summer party on Stephen Avenue. It’s not a place to come hang out on the street, there’s not enough room,” he said. “What this is about, is supporting those local businesses.”

“If you want to come have dinner or lunch, sitting on one of those patios on Stephen Avenue, this is the time to do that.”

Damn, Nenshi. You tell em’! And we will absolutely take you up on that. Patio cocktails, street meats, we’re coming for you.. on foot.