‘Play dates’ are out: City closing playground equipment, sport courts

The former play structure at Ashwood Green Park, as seen in this May 2019 file photo. The play structure has since been updated. It and 32 other play structures and swings in city green spaces will be closed this week because of the coronavirus pandemic. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

CORNWALL – With the coronavirus pandemic and not being able to guarantee surfaces are clean on an ongoing basis, the City of Cornwall is closing all play equipment in city parks as well as swings, slides and benches.

It’s also no game for tennis, basketball and ball hockey courts across the city – they’re closed too.

The signs will state that the equipment is not cleaned or disinfected. “We do not recommend the use of play structures or park benches at this time,” the sign reads.

Medical Officer of Health Dr. Paul Roumeliotis was asked by Cornwall Newswatch during a conference call Tuesday for his thoughts on the measure.

“I think it’s a very prudent measure. These viruses can last on surfaces for up to a couple of days and the thing is we don’t want people to congregate either. So play dates and those type of things are out and I agree with that,” Roumeliotis said.

The areas will be posted with bilingual signage.

Cornwall Parks Supervisor Scott Porter says the signs have been ordered and are scheduled to be installed Thursday morning.

The city has 28 parks with play units and another five green spaces have swings.

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