Mississauga to begin reopening outdoor amenities

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Mississauga City Council approved today a plan to begin reopening the city’s outdoor recreational amenities with a phased approach.

As part of the first phase, the city has reopened municipal golf courses, community gardens, public marinas and the boat launch at Lakefront Promenade.

Some park and community parking lots will also open this Friday, May 29.  Parking lots associated with Phase 2 amenities will open as those facilities are made available to the public, the city says.

"Today, Council made the decision to first reopen individual activities in parks that carry a lower risk such as skateboard and leash-free dog parks,” said Mayor Bonnie Crombie. “We will explore a broader re-opening based on case numbers and how well people follow the guidelines.”

The following amenities will be reopened during Phase 2 starting on Monday, June 1:

  • Park benches and picnic shelters
  • Leash-free zones
  • BMX/Skate parks
  • Public tennis courts
  • Community tennis clubs
  • Seasonal washrooms and portable washrooms

The following amenities will be reopened during Phase 3, which the city says will be completed within 10 days of approval and with guidance from the Peel Region Medical Officer of Health:

  • Multi-sport, basketball and bocce courts
  • Community sport fields

While the city acknowledges that COVID-19 is less likely to spread in these outdoor areas, it is asking residents to enjoy the amenities responsibly and continue physically distancing wherever possible.

Playgrounds, outdoor fitness equipment, and the public boat launch at Marina Park remain closed until further notice; the city says the boat launch will reopen when highwater levels subside.

According to the mayor, the city is actively pursuing opening up more lanes for cyclists and pedestrians, with city councillors asking the city’s Public Transportation and Works Department to continue opening up more lanes each week.

While the city was previously hesitant to begin the reopening process, Crombie said today that reopening outdoor amenities should not pose an issue if people keep a safe physical distance and only socialize with people they live with.

“We also made the tough decision today to cancel major festivals and large events at City facilities and parks for the rest of the summer in an effort to prevent further spread,” said Crombie.

“We once again thank residents and businesses for their patience and understanding as we navigate reopening and recovery."

According to Peel’s medical officer of health Dr. Lawrence Loh, the region is meeting the provincial target of initiating contact tracing investigations on over 90% of COVID-19 cases within 24 hours. Peel is asking residents to smoothen the process by continuing to social distance even as more places and amenities begin to reopen.

“If we start to see a surge in cases, that capacity could very quickly be overwhelmed,” said Loh.

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