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Limited Reopening of Neighborhood Parks for Individual Use to Begin Tuesday in Accordance with COVID-19 Public Health Rules

Walking and Jogging Allowed, Physical Distancing Required, Groups and Sports Prohibited, Parking Lots Remain Closed

Monday, April 20, 2020 - NEWS RELEASE

San Diego – Following comments he made last week regarding a phased reopening of some City parks in a way that continues to protect public health amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer today announced a limited reopening of neighborhood parks for passive uses by individuals.

Activities such as walking, jogging and bicycling will be allowed. No active sports, organized activities or groups will be authorized. Physical distancing rules must be followed and face coverings are strongly recommended in accordance with County of San Diego directives. Parking lots will remain closed, and San Diegans are encouraged to visit the parks closest to them.

The Mayor said future decisions, including whether these limited park reopenings remain in effect or whether additional recreational facilities will be opened in a phased approach will be dependent upon how closely physical distancing rules are followed and the ongoing monitoring of COVID-19 cases. The County of San Diego has baseline conditions for parks and beaches to remain open, with cities able to apply specific measures to local jurisdictions as long as they meet the requirements of public health orders.

“We closed all parks and beaches last month because too many San Diegans were gathering and potentially spreading COVID-19, overwhelming the ability of officers to enforce public safety rules. Since late March San Diegans have been following the rules and our hospitals have been able to meet patient demand,” Mayor Faulconer said. “We want to provide an outlet for people to remain physically and mentally active as we enter the fourth week of San Diegans staying in their homes. I thank San Diegans for their diligence so far, and based on how the public responds to this change we will determine what the next steps could be in coordination with our public health officials.”

Parks seeing reopenings for limited use include community, neighborhood, mini and pocket parks. Beaches, shoreline parks, regional parks, boardwalks, major trails, golf courses, and Balboa Park’s Central Mesa and museums remain closed.

Here is what residents should know:

PUBLIC HEALTH RULES:

  • Physical distancing must be followed in accordance with state, regional and local orders to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.
  • Face coverings are strongly encouraged while visiting park facilities.

 

WHAT IS ALLOWED STARTING TUESDAY:

  • All neighborhood, community, mini and pocket parks will open Tuesday.
  • Only passive activities like walking and jogging are authorized in these parks.
  • Visit parks in your neighborhood and within walking distance to eliminate the need for driving as parking lots will remain closed.
  • Restrooms are open for public use at these parks.
  • Trails will be open within open space parks for public use except for Cowles Mountain and Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve Trail, both of which will remain closed.

 

WHAT IS NOT ALLOWED:

  • No active sports, organized activities or groups will be allowed and playgrounds, basketball courts, baseball fields, soccer fields, tennis courts, etc. will remain closed.
  • Parking lots will remain closed at all parks and beaches.
  • Most amenities at these parks will remain closed including recreation centers, swimming pools, school district joint-use areas, bicycle pump tracks, skate parks, visitor centers, nature centers and campgrounds.

 

The following City-operated facilities remain closed until further notice:

  • Beaches
  • Shoreline parks
  • Regional parks (such as Mission Bay Park)
  • Boardwalks
  • Balboa Park Central Mesa and all museums (except portions of Morley Field and passive sections of the East and West Mesa)
  • Golf courses (Balboa Park, Mission Bay and Torrey Pines)
  • Cowles Mountain and Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve Trail

 

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