Barrie plans for safe reopening of playgrounds

On Monday, July 13th, Ontario announced Stage 3 of the reopening plan for our area. Changes for Stage 3 can begin tomorrow (Friday, July 17) with the reopening of more facilities, but only as municipalities can safely do so.

Prior to and since the announcement of Stage 3, the City of Barrie has been working on reopening plans for more of our facilities and amenities. The city is following provincial directives and getting feedback from the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU) to make sure required health and safety protocols are in place. The city is committed to returning services and reopening facilities for residents in a safe and responsible way.

Playground structures at city parks will reopen gradually in the coming weeks. There are safety inspections that need to be completed before they can open, so it will be a phased approach. The following major and accessible playgrounds will be open as of July 17 at the following city parks:

  • Centennial Park
  • Queen’s Park
  • Lampman Community Park
  • Sunnidale Park
  • East Bayfield Community Park
  • Eastview Community Park
  • Holly Community Park
  • Ferndale Community Park
  • Shear Park
  • Minet’s Point
  • Tyndale Park

The rest of the playground structures will open gradually in the next few weeks, with the goal of having them all open by the end of July. The city is asking residents to only use the structures that are marked as ‘open’ and continue to stay off the areas that are still closed/taped off. Once reopened, playground equipment will not be sanitized, and parents are encouraged to wash their children’s hands and use hand sanitizer after play. The outdoor fitness equipment located at Barrie’s waterfront will not reopen until later this month as repairs are required.

The city is working with the SMDHU to review all of the safety guidelines that need to be in place before reopening recreation and cultural facilities as part of Stage 3. There are many tasks to complete before these facilities can reopen, including rehiring and reallocation of staff, ice installation, pool refilling and safety measures to ensure the required physical distancing.

 

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