**** HRM Media Release
Response to COVID-19: Update on summer aquatics and water testing
The Halifax Regional Municipality continues to monitor and respond to the rapidly evolving effects of COVID-19.
The following is an update on municipal pools, splashpads and beaches.
Staff have reviewed the details of the new guidelines from the province and have established a plan for reopening indoor pools that meets all public health requirements.
The below indoor pools will reopen as follows:
Sackville Sports Stadium – Monday, July 27
Captain William Spry Community Centre – Saturday, August 8
Needham Community Centre – Tuesday, September 8
The indoor pools will open for lane swims and aquafit classes only. It will not be possible to offer open swims at this time. To ensure all restrictions on group gathering sizes and physical distancing are maintained, all activities in the pool will be booked online. More details will be provided closer to the opening dates. The municipality will continue to explore options for further recreation opportunities as restrictions are eased by the province.
Municipal partner recreation facilities (i.e. Canada Games Centre, Cole Harbour Place, Zatzman Sportsplex, etc.) have started the first phase of reopening. Please contact each facility directly for information about pool re-opening dates and protocols.
Due to the time required to recruit and train lifeguards, the maintenance required to open pools and the restrictions of social distancing which drastically reduces the number of swimmers allowed in the pool at once, the Halifax Common, Bedford and Cole Harbour outdoor pools will not be opening for the 2020 season.
Splashpads, Beaches and Water Testing
The following splashpads are now open:
- Halifax Common
- George Dixon Centre
- Isleville Street
- Sackville (Kinsman)
Due to construction in the area, the Bayers-Westwood splashpad is anticipated to open in mid-July.
All municipal beaches are open and lifeguards will be onsite beginning today, July 6 to August 31. Malay Falls beach is open, but will be unsupervised for the summer.
Municipal staff regularly test the water quality at all supervised beaches during the summer months. Please note that there will no longer be water testing taking place at Black Rock beach, Dingle beach, Kinsmen beach and Government Wharf. Water quality testing will continue at Malay Falls beach even though it is unsupervised.
High bacteria levels can be caused by a number of factors, including dogs, birds, wildlife, and high temperatures. Staff will continue testing the water until bacteria levels return to safe levels. The municipality will advise residents when beaches close and reopen.
More information and updates on beaches, pools and splashpads can be found on halifax.ca/summeraquatics
For more information on municipal services during the COVID-19 pandemic, visit Halifax.ca/coronavirus.