Re-opening of Park Amenities Begins in Richmond Hill!

May 21, 2020

Richmond Hill is working on the gradual and safe re-opening of select park amenities
beginning this weekend. “We’re excited that after all the effort our community has put in to help flatten the curve, they will once again be able to get out and enjoy more of our beautiful parks system,” said Mayor Dave Barrow. “It’s going to take us some time, but I want to thank everyone in advance for your patience as we work to re-open amenities in our 190 parks as quickly, but also as safely, as possible.”Starting Friday, green spaces will be open to allow for activities such as playing catch, kicking a ball, flying a kite, exercising or stretching on a yoga mat and letting children run around.

Tower Hill Off-Leash Dog Area will also be open beginning Friday. Residents are asked not to bring dog toys or bowls into the park, to bring their own hand sanitizer and to use their own bags to pick up after their dog.

Over the coming weeks, beginning with neighbourhood parks and parkettes, City staff will be working to remove caution tape and take down barriers to re-open amenities including picnic tables, benches, basketball courts, tennis courts, skate parks and sports fields. Updated signage outlining COVID-19 health and safety guidelines will also be put in place as amenities are opened up. Residents are asked not to use amenities until City staff have reopened
them.

Residents are strongly encouraged to stay local and only use parks and trails in their own neighbourhood and with people from their own household. While visiting a park or trail, residents must continue to practice physical distancing by staying two metres (six feet) from others and must not congregate in groups, unless they live together. If a resident arrives at a park, trail or amenity that is crowded, they are advised to wait until there is
enough space to physically distance or return at another time.

The following park amenities will continue to be closed: playgrounds, outdoor exercise equipment, splash pads, washrooms and clubhouses. The City will work to re-open these once the Provincial emergency order has been lifted and/or amended. In addition, organized team sports such as soccer, baseball, football and basketball will not be permitted as they don’t allow for physical distancing. Permits for soccer and baseball diamonds will not be issued until further notice. Community centres and other City facilities remain closed to the public.
“I encourage everyone to get out and enjoy some fresh air, but continue to be vigilant in your efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19,” added Mayor Barrow. For updates, residents can subscribe to RichmondHill.ca/COVID19.