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COVID-19 forces RDCK to close recreation facilities

The Nelson and District Community Complex will be closed for east four weeks due to the novel coronavirus — COVID-19. — The Nelson Daily photo

Fitness enthusiasts don’t need to wake up early to be the first in line at the NDCC Fitness Centre for a jog on the treadmill or a lap in the pool.

The Regional District of Central Kootenay is falling in line with most local governments in closing down recreation facilities due to the novel coronavirus — COVID-19.

In a media release Monday evening, the RDCK said all community complexes and recreation facilities and programs in the district will be suspended at the close of business, Monday, March 16 — including the Nelson and District Community Complex.

The RDCK said closures will be in place until further notice, for at least four weeks.

“All programs scheduled to run at these facilities have been cancelled, including drop-in classes, pre-registered programs and rentals,” the RDCK said. “Staff will be working to process refunds and credits. Time-based memberships will be put on hold immediately. Customers do not need to take any action at this time.”

The RDCK said all arena ice operations will be closed for the season, and all organized sporting activities are cancelled until further notice.

The closures affect the following:

Nelson, Salmo and Areas E, F & G

  • Nelson & District Community Complex
  • Nelson Civic Arena
  • North Shore Hall
  • Salmo & District Fitness Centre

Castlegar, Areas I & J

  • Castlegar & District Community Complex (including Castlegar Senior’s Centre)
  • Pioneer Arena

Area H, Silverton, New Denver

  • New Denver Fitness Centre

Creston, Areas A, B & C

  • Creston & District Community Complex
  • Rotacrest Hall
  • Creston Education Centre Gym
  • Riondel Community Centre

Creston PhysioWorks & More at the Creston & District Community Complex will be closed as well.

The RDCK said the Slocan Valley Recreation Department front office will remain open, although programs will be cancelled.

Spring Break programs that are currently scheduled for this week in Castlegar and Creston will continue, unless the situation changes. Spring Break programs that run into next week are being evaluated, and may also be cancelled. Customers who no longer wish to participate in the Spring Break programs may cancel, and their payment will be refunded.

“The health and safety of our employees and the people we serve is our first priority, and closing our facilities will help prevent the risk and spread of infection,” said Stuart Horn, Chief Administrative Officer for the RDCK.

“Further, this will allow us to focus our resources on providing essential services to communities across the region and keeping critical operations running. We thank residents and visitors for their understanding and patience at this time.”

Other affected services

  • The RDCK is closing the re-use buildings, commonly called “Free Stores,” located at many Resource Recovery facilities. Regular disposal services and operating hours at all facilities will continue but users will not be able to enter re-use buildings to deposit or collect items until further notice.
  • All regional parks remain open and accessible, but RDCK staff will be evaluating this as the situation unfolds.
  • The RDCK Board meeting scheduled for March 19 will proceed as planned. Anyone with flu-like symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath) or if you have recently returned to Canada and have not self-isolated for 14 days, should not attend the meeting in person. Members of the public can attend the Board meeting by calling into GoToMeeting with the following numbers: Canada (Toll Free): 1 888 455 1389, Access Code: 435-768-021.

“We urge people to follow the recommendations from the provincial and national health authorities, and do all they can do to help protect themselves and their families,” said Mr. Horn.

“Wash your hands often with soap and water, cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, avoid others who are unwell, and stay home when you are sick.”

Further updates will be shared as needed, and will be also posted on RDCK website .

For more resources, please visit the BC Centre for Disease Control website

Incorporated in 1965, the Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) is a local government that serves 60,000 residents in 11 electoral areas and nine member municipalities. The RDCK provides more than 160 services, including community facilities, fire protection and emergency services, grants, planning and land use, regional parks, resource recovery and handling, transit, water services and much more. For more information about the RDCK, visit www.rdck.ca.