VANCOUVER -- The City of Vancouver and Vancouver Park Board are opening up "clean air spaces" in response to Metro Vancouver’s air quality advisory.

There are five locations across the city, allowing the public to drop in and visit a building with high efficiency air filters.

Those space are:

  • Carnegie Community Centre – 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Evelyne Saller Centre – 9:15 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Gathering Place Community Centre – 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Mount Pleasant Community Centre – 7:15 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday to Wednesday and 7:15 a.m. to 8 p.m., Thursday to Friday and 8:45 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday
  • Vancouver Public Library Central Branch lower level rooms – opening hours to be announced

“These sites offer a limited number of spaces with high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) or MERV 13 filtering, which can support people struggling with respiratory issues,” said the city in a news release.

Safety guidelines for COVID-19 will be in place, such as physical distancing measures, capacity limits, frequent cleaning of high-touch surfaces and provision of hand sanitizer.

Visitors will be monitored for symptoms of respiratory issues and COVID-19, and referred to Vancouver Coastal Health for medical care where needed.

B.C.’s south coast has been subject to air quality advisories for a week straight due to wildfire smoke from the Okanagan as well as Washington and Oregon states.

The province has recorded some of the worst air quality readings in the world in recent days.

Those with underlying health issues, young children and the elderly are most at risk.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has warned people to avoid exercising outside and instead workout indoors.

Officials believe the smoky conditions will remain until at least Thursday, but that's dependent on wind, weather and wildfire behaviour changes.