Broward County Announces Park Closures and Social Distancing for Public Transport

People Boarding Bus

BROWARD COUNTY, FL – County Administrator Bertha Henry issued Emergency Order 20-02, which temporarily closes County parks and implements schedule changes and activities to support social distancing for bus riders. The Order also restates some provisions of Emergency Order 20-01 regarding essential businesses.

Broward County Parks – All parks operated by Broward County are closed to public access beginning at 12:01AM on Tuesday, March 24, until further notice. This includes regional, neighborhood and specialty parks; nature centers; and natural areas. C.B. Smith Park in Pembroke Pines will remain open as a COVID-19 drive-through testing collection site until further notice. Parks employees will continue to report to work.

Broward County Transit (BCT) – Broward County asks that members of the public limit their use of bus and paratransit services to essential travel only, and that riders comply with the CDC recommendations for social distancing. BCT will also implement the following social distancing measures, until further notice:

•  Beginning Tuesday, March 24, customers will enter and exit the bus only via the rear doors, except for customers who require use of the wheelchair ramp, which will remain available at the front door.

•  Also beginning March 24, bus fare collections will be temporarily suspended on all bus service, including TOPS paratransit.

•  Beginning Saturday, March 28, BCT will operate a Saturday schedule daily, Monday through Saturday; Limited Stop (or “Breeze”) service will be eliminated, and Express buses will operate on 30-minute schedules. Sunday schedules will continue as they currently are.

Broward County Libraries – As a reminder, Broward County Libraries were closed to in-person public access at the close of business on March 19, until further notice. Libraries staff will continue to report to work. A wealth of online library resources remains available. Fines will not be assessed for materials returned late as a result of the closure.

The following provisions of Emergency Order 20-02 restate portions of Emergency Order 20-01 regarding essential and non-essential businesses.

Marinas and boat launches, docking, fueling, marine supply and other marina services – These continue to be identified as essential businesses, but only for limited operations, including: commercial fishing, law enforcement activities, to accommodate boats and ferries operating out of Port Everglades, to accommodate persons living aboard their vessels, persons returning to the U.S. from international voyages, and persons needing to remove their vessel from the water or perform emergency maintenance. This change was made primarily to curtail the continued social gatherings of large parties and groups at these facilities, contrary to the guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Pawn Shops – Excluded from the initial list of essential businesses, pawn shops are now included in the list of essential business, as they are deemed to provide an important financial resource to many residents, particularly during times of need.

All other provisions of Emergency Order 20-01 remain in effect.

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