COLUMBIA, S.C. — Since the start of the pandemic, the City of Columbia’s indoor recreational facilities have been closed to the public. Now they’re gearing up to reopen on May 3.
City officials say as they prep and clean their facilities before opening, their number one goal is safety.
"Social distancing will be in place," Assistant City Manager Henry Simons told News19. "We will also follow any capacity issues per facility based on the fire marshal’s request."
Simons added there will be "frequent disinfecting of equipment, and our goal is to ensure we’re doing this on an hourly basis."
Facilities will also require masks and temperature checks to enter.
"Our goal is to ensure that our citizens are safe," said Simons. "We’ve been following the [coronavirus] data this entire time and one of the main reasons we haven’t opened until this time is because of the cases and data that has been provided by DHEC."
The Charles R. Drew Wellness Center will open May 3rd. The public will be able to enjoy its indoor pool, gymnasium and fitness center while following their COVID-19 guidelines.
The manager of the center told News19 “once we reopen, we will be following DHEC and CDC recommendations and guidelines. Masks will be required. We will routinely disinfect the facilities' common and high traffic areas.”
Pool guests must bring their own towels and individual swim lessons will not be available. Fitness classes will start May 17th.
Indoor community centers at Greenview Park, Hyatt Park, Lorick Park, Pinehurst Park, ML King Park, Woodland Park and Katheryn Bellfield Center will also open May 3 with safety precautions in place.
City officials announced the art center is reopening too, and youth baseball will start in early May.
The city’s outdoor pools will open Memorial Day Weekend.
Summer Camp, Summer Concerts and Movies in the Park are postponed until further notice.