(Tulista Park / Town of Sidney)

Starting today, the District of Oak Bay and Town of Sidney will begin to reopen their playgrounds after being closed for several months amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a statement, the Town of Sidney said it will begin to reopen municipal playgrounds as of Monday, June 8, which have been closed since March 20.

Playgrounds at Tulista Park and Iroquois Park will both reopen as of today, while other playgrounds in the municipality will be reopened in the days after maintenance and inspections are performed.

The Water Spray Park in Iroquois Park as well as the Community Wellness Park adjacent to the library will remain closed, as the Town continues to develop safe reopening plans for these facilities.

Signage will be posted at all municipal playgrounds, advising that playground equipment and other park surfaces are not being sanitized.

According to the statement, Sidney staff say parents and guardians can make an informed decision before allowing their children to use the playground equipment.

An updated list of the status of each playground will be available on the Parks and Pathways Updates page on the Town Of Sidney’s website.

The District of Oak Bay has also announced that their playgrounds will re-open on June 8, in coordination with guidance from Island Health.

According to Oak Bay’s website, once play structures are re-opened, signage will be in place to provide guidelines for safe use.

Both the Town of Sidney and District of Oak Bay ask that people who visit the playgrounds in the coming weeks follow the public health and safety guidelines to protect themselves and others.

These include:

  • Playground equipment is not sanitized so come prepared and bring your own hand sanitizer or disinfectant wipes;
  • Practice safe physical distancing and keep six feet (2 metres) away from others;
  • Stay home if you are sick;
  • Come back later if the playground seems too busy; and
  • Limit your playtime to ensure everyone gets a turn.