Mayor Shea gave a recorded update to the community regarding COVID-19 and the actions the city of Irvine will be taking to protect its citizens and stop the spread.
“Today the country and most of the world is fighting to stop the spread of COVID-19,” stated Mayor Shea. “The city of Irvine is no different, as we have activated our Emergency Operations Center to monitor the situation. As your mayor, along with our staff and City Council members, we have been working around the clock to ensure that we do everything we can to safeguard our public health. On Thursday, March 12, at my request, our City Council convened an emergency meeting and deliberated at length considering the effects of the spread of coronavirus. The City Council unanimously approved a number of preventative measures to preserve the health, safety and well being of our diverse community.”
The details of the closure can be found on the city of Irvine’s website here. We have also combined and transcribed their recent press releases regarding the local COVID-19 emergency proclamation below:
In an effort to ensure the safety of City staff and the public, all Community Centers will be closed, effective Wednesday, March 18 at 5:30 p.m. The closure is the latest emergency measure to go into effect as part of the City’s executive order that was issued on March 17.
“This decision was not taken lightly,” stated Mayor Christina Shea. “Our community centers serve as important neighborhood hubs and provide essential services to our residents. But we also know the health and safety of our community is paramount. Given the high volume of people who pass through our facilities each day, it would be difficult to implement the public health guidance as it relates to social distancing. Each community center throughout our park system will have restrooms available should residents participate in the passive use of our parks.”
The closures include the following facilities:
- All Community Centers
- Irvine Fine Arts Center
- Irvine Child Resource Center
- All public facilities at the Orange County Great Park including the Visitors Center, Artists Studio, and Great Park Gallery
- William Woollett Jr. Aquatics Center and Northwood Aquatic Center
Parks remain open for passive use, and park restrooms that are not located within Community Centers will remain open to the public.
Community Centers will be staffed during this time to monitor public use of parks, playgrounds, and athletic fields in an effort to ensure our community can enjoy City park amenities in a healthy and responsible manner, now and in the future.
City officials continue to closely monitor the evolving situation regarding the novel coronavirus, taking steps to safeguard the health and well-being of residents and businesses. Following is a list of additional facility closures and services available:
City Hall: Closed to the public. Essential services are available online, by telephone or video conference.
Irvine Police Department: Open, but community members are strongly encouraged to call or email before coming to the station.
Senior Centers: Closed. A modified Congregate Meals Program with an outside lunch pick-up is available at Lakeview Senior Center. Meals on Wheels continues to provide meals to registered participants. Social services are available by phone.
Sweet Shade Ability Center: Closed.
Irvine Animal Care Center: The Irvine Animal Care Center will be open on an appointment-only basis. No drop-in services shall be available. Community members can call the Center at 949-724-7740 to make an appointment.
Community Centers: All City of Irvine Community Centers shall be closed to the public. This includes: William Woollett Jr. Aquatics Center and Northwood Aquatic Center, Irvine Fine Arts Center, Irvine Child Resource Center (CRC), and all public facilities at the Orange County Great Park, including the Visitors Center, Artists Studio, and Art Gallery.
After School and Spring Break Programs: Given the closures of the Irvine Unified School District, Santa Ana Unified School District, and Tustin Unified School District, after school programs are and spring break programs are canceled.
These measures are in addition to actions the City Council put in place at an emergency City Council meeting on March 12. The council closed senior centers, canceled all city-sponsored community events through the end of April, including the Great Park Balloon and Carousel, and canceled all adult recreation programs, as well as indoor and outdoor youth recreation programs through April 30.
“The changes in work and home life caused by COVID-19 are significant and evolving,” City Manager John Russo said. “These additional operational modifications have been devised with a goal of protecting all city employees and community members, while continuing to provide public service. The declaration of local emergency will not affect services provided by the Irvine Police Department, Building Inspections, and Code Enforcement. We are asking for the community’s assistance, understanding, and patience, as we navigate these unprecedented times together.”
For a complete list of measures in effect and for regular updates on this rapidly evolving situation, visit cityofirvine.org.