Safe re-openings of Surrey recreational facilities

SURREY Councillor Laurie Guerra, Chair of the Parks, Recreation and Culture Committee, said on Friday that during this time of the COVID-19 pandemic, ensuring the heath and safety of the City of Surrey’s residents, patrons and staff are the principles that determine the re-opening of recreational facilities.

She added: “It is unfortunate that there has been misinformation circulated about the closures of our recreational facilities. Our recreational facilities were closed on March 15 due to COVID-19 and not from budgetary pressures. Since June 1, we have re-opened to the public a number of outdoor facilities and programs. We are continuing to develop plans for the opening of additional facilities in the coming weeks and are working closely with our sports community on safety plans that will prepare them to return to sport when the facilities re-open. I encourage our residents to make use of our facilities as they become available, and to help us keep them open by taking proper health measures by observing physical distancing, having your own hand sanitizer and staying home if you are sick.”

The City of Surrey is taking a safe and phased approach to the re-opening of parks, recreation and culture facilities. Re-openings are approved based on the ability to support the BC’s Restart Plan, and satisfy the Council-approved criteria:

1. Ability to comply with new Provincial Health Order

2. Reasonable public demand for services

3. Financial viability

4. Public and employee safety measures are in place

Based on the criteria, the following facilities and services have re-opened:

June 1 – Surrey public playgrounds
June 2 – Darts Hill Garden Park
June 15 – Spray (Water) Parks
June 17 – Resume issuance of permits for outdoor sport facilities
June 27 – Outdoor pools
June 27 – Lifeguard service at Crescent Beach
July 6 – Outdoor Summer preschool and children camps
July 6 – Outdoor fitness classes
July 14 – Historic Stewart Farm

She said that City staff continue to work on enhanced protocols and procedures to ensure environments will be safe and welcoming upon re-opening. The City is also following guidance from the BC & Yukon Lifesaving Society, British Columbia Recreation and Parks Association (BCRPA) and VIA Sport as reopening plans are developed. More information on Surrey’s response to COVID-19 can be found here.