The COVID-19 crisis has resulted in further closings, Town Manager Sean Kimball announced late Thursday evening.
While school buildings have now been vacant for approximately two weeks and non-essential businesses were required to shut down as of Monday, several outdoor spaces in Cheshire have been left open for public use.
However, after determining that too many people were gathering in large groups—current social distancing protocols recommended by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Chesprocott Health District require that people refrain from gatherings of 10 or more people at this time—Kimball made the determination to close courts and playgrounds in Cheshire until further notice.
According to the executive order signed by Kimball, the ban applies to “Town and School tennis courts, basketball courts, playgrounds, the Dog Park, and the Cheshire High School grounds including the turf field complex.” The order went into effect Friday, March 27, at 7 a.m. and will be lifted at Kimball’s discretion.
The power to do so was afforded Kimball after he declared a local state of emergency on March 16, due to the spread of the coronavirus, which activated the municipal Emergency Operations Plan. The move also comes just a day after the first confirmed cases of the coronavirus were reported in Cheshire.
What remains accessible to the public at this time are the town’s open space trails, the Farmington Canal Trail, and local parks. However, Kimball warned in his executive order that those areas would only remain open as long as there were no reported mass gatherings of people “in close proximity.”