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'Serious problems' at Skatepark prompt new rules at city facility

Mayor says only five people will be allowed to use the park at any one time; He said bylaw enforcement officers will be patrolling the area regularly

In his regular video COVID-19 update to citizens Monday, Orillia Mayor Steve Clarke addressed some "serious concerns we had over the weekend."

"Over this weekend, the Skatepark was packed," said Clarke, noting many people using the facility at Veterans' Park "were not adhering to physical distancing and there were large gatherings of people."

That, he said, is not acceptable. As a result, the city announced today that only five users will be allowed to use the skatepark at any one time.

He said municipal bylaw enforcement officers will be patrolling the area, providing education. A last resort would be levying a ticket, he said.

"If this area continues to be a problem, we would be left with no alternative but to close the park - something we just don't want to have to do," said the mayor.

Clarke reminds citizens that playgrounds and beaches remain closed.

He also announced the city's waste diversion site will be opening Saturday mornings, starting this Saturday. In addition, the city has extended until July 5 a provision that allows residents to put one bag of garbage at the curb - on their designated collection day - free of charge.

He urged people to abide by physical distancing guidelines and the rule limiting public gatherings to a maximum of five people.

Click above to watch his video.