Some civic facilities in the Tri-Cities are expected to re-open later this month after being shuttered due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The city of Coquitlam said it expects to have city hall, the service centre, the animal shelter and the community police on an appointment basis by mid-June. The Town Centre Recycling Depot and the city’s nine spray pads will also re-open, with outdoor pools expected to follow in early July.
“The city has been methodically working through the logistics required to re-open public facilities safely in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the city said in a press release. “With the safety of the public and our employees as the top priority, the city must also consider service delivery, space, equipment, financial impacts and many others factors as it works to meet provincial WorkSafeBC guidelines and public health protocols.”
The city added that it will be enhancing its cleaning requirements and making alterations to facilities, like adding Plexiglas, barriers and markings to allow for greater physical distancing. Appointments and registration will be used to ensure that the number of people in attendance is controlled and the size of groups is limited.
Outdoor facilities are also being expanded, the city said.
Drop-offs will be permitted at the Town Centre Recycling Depot and people will be able to register for outdoor recreation, fitness classes and children’s camps.
The moves are part of B.C.’s Restart Plan, the city added, noting that the phased reopening aligns with orders from the provincial health officer.
Port Coquitlam is also beginning to re-open some of its facilities.
On June 15, spray pads will switch on at Castle, Lions and Sun Valley parks, while Robert Hope and Centennial Pools are scheduled to unlock their doors on July 2 for public rental opportunities and regulated public swims.
Some outdoor camps for children may also be available and a modified Canada Day is being planned to “celebrate Port Coquitlam’s resiliency and support local businesses,” the city said in a press release.
“This is great news for the community,” said Port Coquitlam Mayor Brad West. “Parents across Port Coquitlam have been eagerly awaiting more fun and safe activities for their kids.”
He added that safety protocols will be in place to prevent the transmission of COVID-19.
“I’d like to reinforce that public health is and will always be our top priority,” he said. “We’ll be relying on the community to be responsible so that we can keep these much-needed amenities open.”
Port Moody is also looking at opening up some of its outdoor facilities in the coming weeks.
While the pool at Rocky Point Park will remain closed for the summer, Westhill Pool will open July 4 for registered length and family swim times, as well as swim club. The city is still determining an opening day for its spray parks.