Enforcement of the ordinance banning smoking along Boulder's Pearl Street Mall will begin April 1, city officials announced Thursday as they began rolling out the first "No Smoking" signs along the pedestrian mall late this week.

The ordinance banning smoking on the Pearl Street Mall between 11th and 15th streets went into effect Jan. 18, but officers only have been giving out warnings since the signs were not ready to be put up due to a delay in manufacturing. Boulder County also has banned smoking on the lawn of the county courthouse along the mall.

Contractors hired by the city installed the first signs Thursday with the remainder due to go up early Friday.

The maximum penalty for a first or second offense within two years is a $500 fine, while a third conviction within two years carries a maximum $1,000 fine and a maximum 90-day jail sentence.

An event celebrating the smoking ban will be held 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. April 12 in the 1300 block of Pearl Street, where county, city and Downtown Boulder Inc. staff will be available to answer questions about the ban and offer resources for those who wish to quit smoking.

The Downtown Boulder Inc. board, the city's Parks and Recreation Advisory Board and the Boulder County commissioners all supported the mall smoking ban.

In a memo proposing the ban last year, city officials said smoking on the mall detracts from visitors' experiences and that cigarette butt removal represents a significant amount of work for cleaning crews.

For more information, visit bouldercolorado.gov.