SPAIN, Brazil — The owners of bright bars and restaurants in Saskatchew are calling for a provincial government to intervene to prevent the city from going the way of Vancouver and Victoria.
The restaurant owners, who say they’ve been threatened by the city’s recent decision to impose a ban on new development, are demanding an end to the closure of the establishments by April 1.
“It is just like the way we were before the ban,” said Bruno Sánchez, the owner of Boca Bar, which was founded in 1999.
“We have no choice but to close.”
The ban is being enforced by the provincial government, which has also closed bars and nightclubs in other cities in Canada.
Saskatoon’s ban is set to expire at the end of April, but owners say they won’t be able to reopen until that date.
They say they are currently in talks with the provincial Ministry of Natural Resources, which owns the property, to determine whether or not to extend the ban.
“We’ve been asked to close, we’re going to close tomorrow,” said Sánachez, who has operated the business for 15 years.
“But the problem is, we can’t.
The province doesn’t have the money to make us do it.”
Sánaches bar, Boca, has been the target of many threats in recent years.
In February, Saskatoon Mayor Michael Oshry said he planned to shut down the bar because of a spike in crime in the city.
In November, the city banned all new construction on private property in the downtown core.
In December, a video of an intoxicated man lying on the sidewalk outside a bright bar surfaced.
In response to the violence, the provincial ministry imposed a ban that requires all new residential construction within 10 metres of public parks and open spaces to be approved by the government.
The Saskatchews owners say their bar will still be open.
“Boca Bar will be back in business,” said owner Bruno Sáez.
“The community is with us.”
He said the city will also continue to provide food to the city, which is expected to be $300,000 less than it would have been before the bar closed.
“There’s no doubt about that.
But the bar is going to have to shut,” said Boca’s Sáz.
“Our customers are coming back.”