Designated smoking areas bothersome to both smokers and non-smokers

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Arts and Science student Larry Li smokes outside of the library by the picnic tables, not in a designated smoking area- photo by Michael Letendre

Arts and Science student Larry Li smokes outside of the library by the picnic tables, not in a designated smoking area. Smokers and non-smokers complain that the current smoking areas aren’t in the right spots. Photo: Michael Letendre

Smokers at Langara are asking for more smoking areas, while the current designated areas are frustrating some students.

Non-smokers say current positioning is the pits

Langara has two designated smoking spots in front of the main entrances to the A building, which many students have to walk through on their way to class.

Psychology student Ali Hejri said he has to walk through the smoking areas regularly.

“It bothers me,” he said. “It would be better if there wasn’t any smoking here.”

Smoking areas follow Vancouver’s six-metre bylaw

Langara’s director of facilities Wendy Lannard said in an email that the smoking areas were chosen because they follow Vancouver’s smoking bylaw.

The bylaw states smoking has to take place at least six metres from any entrance, opening, window or air intake vent.

Some smokers use unofficial smoke-spots to save time

Despite the restrictions, many students ignore them and smoke in non-designated areas.

The west side of B building is one of those spots. It is covered, and many students smoke just outside of the entrance doors.

Curtis Leblanc, a photography student, said he smokes outside of B building with fellow classmates because it is too far to go anywhere else.

“We don’t have much time between classes,” he said.

He said people normally don’t mind, and he tries to be accommodating.

“If there’s people around, I usually walk away.”

A map of designated and undesignated Langara campus smoking areas - illustration by Audrey McKinnon

A map of designated and undesignated Langara campus smoking areas – illustration by Audrey McKinnon

Does Langara need more designated smoking areas?

Lannard said the school would consider adding another smoking area as long as it met the city bylaws.

Arts and science student Larry Li would like to see more smoking spots on campus

“I think it would be good for people who need a place to smoke.”

Loni Fay, a psychology student, believes smokers should stick to assigned areas around campus.

“You shouldn’t smoke were people don’t want to smell it,” she said. “I think about people like my mom and grandma who both have asthma.”

Not everyone is bothered, like photography student Michael Gill.

“I don’t mind. Just walk away if you don’t like it,” he said. “As long as you’re not blowing smoke in my face, it’s fine.”

Reported by Michael Letendre

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