Mayor Joseph Solomon on Wednesday announced the closure of all Warwick public parks - including Rocky Point State Park and the city's beaches and recreational facilities - until further notice. The move comes following Gov. Gina Raimondo's announcement
Mayor Joseph Solomon on Wednesday announced the closure of all Warwick public parks – including Rocky Point State Park and the city’s beaches and recreational facilities – until further notice.
The move comes following Gov. Gina Raimondo’s announcement this week that all state parks and beaches will be closed starting Friday, April 3. The opening of Rhode Island state campgrounds has been delayed until at least May 1.
According to a press release from Solomon’s office, Warwick Police will monitor parks and beaches to ensure compliance.
“If people are blatantly ignoring the new rules – if they choose to congregate in groups at parks and beaches, or if they are not complying with physical distancing rules – they may be cited if actions and behavior are not corrected,” the release states.
“I love Warwick’s parks and beaches, which in my opinion, are the best in Rhode Island. But I love our families, friends, and neighbors more,” Solomon said in the release. “Too many people have been congregating at our parks and beaches recently, with little regard to social distancing rules. Also, as we see other parks and beaches around the state closing, it is natural that people start heading for the areas that remain open. This order is not about shutting down our recreational areas for our residents; it is about preventing an influx of visitors from congregating.”
“While it is hard to close Rocky Point State Park, along with our other beautiful state parks and beaches, it is absolutely necessary to do so at this critical time,” state Department of Environmental Management Director Janet Coit said in the release. “Protecting public health is paramount, and that means adhering to social distancing and restricting access to public places where any groups might gather – such as parks and beaches.”
According to the mayor’s release, the parks and recreational facilities that are closed include Apponaug Park, Belmont Park, Warwick City Park, Clegg Field, Conimicut Point Park, Goddard Memorial State Park, the Gorton Track, Oakland Beach Park, Pawtuxet Park, Rocky Point State Park, George Salter Memorial Grove, Father Tirocchi Field, and Winslow Park.
The city’s Parks and Recreation Department, which includes McDermott Pool, has been closed since the city’s declaration of emergency on March 13, as have Thayer and Warburton arenas.
All offices in Warwick City Hall, as well as the Buttonwoods Municipal Annex, Pilgrim Senior Center and Randall Holden, also remain closed.
“The City will continue to provide essential services, including public safety; sanitation, including trash, recycling, and yard waste pickup; wastewater treatment; and critical City functions,” the mayor’s release reads. “Under the state of emergency, all municipal board and commission meetings, including the City Council, Zoning and Planning Boards, and Municipal and Probate Courts were cancelled until further notice.”
Additional updates will be available at warwickri.gov.