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Toronto weekend update: COVID-19, Active TO, CafeTO, construction interruptions

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TORONTO, ON., Aug. 28, 2020 — Today the City of Toronto released a statement on the status of COVID-19 that is still circulating in the city. Interestingly the age distribution of reported cases is seeing a shift towards younger people, notably those under 40-years-old.

Toronto Public Health says that while younger cases have often not been made severely ill by COVID-19 and are less likely to be hospitalized, they can still transmit the virus to others, especially to vulnerable groups.

Of greater concern here is that in Toronto, many young people live with multi-generational families, and make up a large part of our service-based workforce. All residents, regardless of age, must follow public health advice to keep everyone safe.

As of today there have been 15,925 cases of COVID-19 in Toronto, an increase of 26 today. There are 40 people hospitalized. In total, 14,442 people have recovered from COVID-19, an increase of 19 since yesterday. To date, there have been 1,174 COVID-19 deaths in Toronto. Seven deaths that occurred in April and were recently identified as part of Toronto Public Health’s ongoing quality assurance work and have been added to the total number today; there were no new COVID-19 deaths in the city yesterday. Case status data can be found on the City’s reporting platform.

Provincial orders under the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act and the City bylaw on physical distancing remain in effect. Yesterday, the City received 43 complaints related to parks use and physical distancing. Officers have cautioned more than 4,200 people this month about physical distancing, alcohol, bonfires and littering bylaws.

Construction affecting downtown intersection

There will be a partial intersection closure at Lake Shore Boulevard and Jarvis St. this weekend so crews can safely remove and replace sections of the Gardiner Expressway above, as part of work to renew the expressway between Jarvis and Cherry Streets.

From 12:01 a.m. Saturday, August 29 to 4:59 a.m., Monday, August 31, westbound Lake Shore Boulevard will be reduced to two lanes leading up to Jarvis St and there will be no southbound access to Jarvis St. at Lake Shore Boulevard. Left turns will be prohibited in all directions and only northbound right turns will be permitted on Jarvis St. at Lake Shore Boulevard. In addition, the Gardiner Expressway will be reduced to a single eastbound lane from 6 a.m. Saturday, August 29 to 6 a.m. Sunday, August 30, between Jarvis St. and Cherry St., to facilitate a concrete pour. There is no impact to the Gardiner westbound.

ActiveTO on Lakeshore Blvd. West

ActiveTO road closures and Quiet Streets

Parts of major roads in the city will be closed this weekend for ActiveTO, from Saturday, August 29 at 6 a.m. to Sunday, August 30 at 11 p.m.:

  • Lake Shore Boulevard West (eastbound lanes only) from Windermere Avenue to Stadium Road. As a result, the eastbound Gardiner Expressway off ramp to Lake Shore Boulevard West (exit #146) will also be closed
  • Lake Shore Boulevard East (eastbound lanes only) from Leslie Street to just south of Woodbine Avenue (Kew Beach Avenue)
  • Bayview Avenue from Front Street East to Rosedale Valley Road, and River Street from Gerrard Street East to Bayview Avenue

Residents planning to use those roads are advised to access them by bike or as a pedestrian because nearby parking is limited and there is no onsite parking available. Parking lots at Sunnyside Park, Budapest Park and Sir Casimir Gzowski Park will be closed all weekend during ActiveTO closures. Overnight parking is not permitted in these lots and any vehicles should be moved before midnight on Friday.

More than 60 kilometres of Quiet Streets are available to neighbourhood residents throughout the city this weekend. More information, including an online map of all locations, can be found on the ActiveTO webpage at toronto.ca/activeTO.

CafeTo is popular in Toronto Beaches

CaféTO update
Curb-lane closures continue to be in place this weekend to accommodate cafés and patios for CaféTO locations throughout the city. The CaféTO program currently supports more than 700 restaurants with expanded dining space to allow for physical distancing.

Toronto Beaches Shopping

Rules for Shops, restaurants and bars
Toronto Public Health is stressing the need to maintain physical distance and wear a mask or face covering when shopping in a store, mall or flea market. Those shopping in person are encouraged to shop at times stores may be quieter or to try shopping online, when possible. Residents should always wash or sanitize their hands after being in a store or public place and not go out if they are feeling ill.

In food and drink establishments, additional requirements to protect the health and safety of customers remain in effect. These include ensuring that all customers remain seated except when entering or exiting, using the washroom or paying the bill. Customers can expect to be asked for basic personal information as management of food and drink establishments must keep customer logs that include names and contact information for each party in the event contact tracing is required.

Inspections of food and drink establishments by Bylaw and Toronto Public Health Officers will continue this weekend. Last weekend six complaint-based inspections were carried out. Officers continue to be encouraged by an increase in compliance across restaurants and bars in the city.

Learn more about requirements for food and drink establishments online.

Beach volleyball courts at Woodbine Beach

Toronto beach procedures

Toronto beaches are open, including the four Toronto Island Park beaches. Lifeguards supervise swim areas from 11:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. daily. People should only swim in the swim zones marked by yellow and red flags as these areas are lifeguard supervised. Swimming without the supervision of a lifeguard is not recommended. There is no lifeguard supervision of Rouge Valley Beach. For more information on the City’s beaches visit toronto.ca/beaches.

It can be unsafe to swim, even at designated swimming beaches, for 48 hours after a rainfall due to the possible presence of high levels of bacteria that could pose a risk to human health. Toronto Public Health posts water quality reports for local beaches online.

Lifeguard on duty at Marie Curtis Park

Residents visiting a beach or park must practise physical distancing, avoid crowding, and behave responsibly. Bonfires on beaches, and organized parties, with excessive drinking and DJs with amplification of sound, are prohibited.

Last weekend, seven tickets were issued at Toronto’s beaches under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act and Chapter 608, for violations including the consumption of alcohol, large gatherings and entering a restricted area.

Bylaw officers, Toronto Police and Toronto Fire will have a highly visible presence at beaches and parking lots to ensure that crowds, bonfires and other prohibited activities do not occur or are dealt with quickly should they occur. Bylaw enforcement officers and Toronto Police will issue tickets related to bylaw infractions, including littering. Under the City’s Parks bylaw, parks and beaches are closed from 12:01 a.m. to 5:30 a.m. As needed this weekend, enforcement officers will be enforcing beach closure hours and clearing beaches after 12:01 a.m.

Parking restrictions are in place at Toronto beaches on Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings. Parking restrictions will be in place at the following beaches starting at 7 p.m. on Friday: Marie Curtis Park, Humber Bay West Park, Humber Bay East Park, Cherry Beach and Bluffer’s Park. Toronto Police will be present at all parking lot entrances. Vehicles leaving beach parking lots after 7 p.m. will be able to do so freely. Parking enforcement will also have a significant presence, with tagging and towing of illegally parked vehicles in the vicinity of beaches where parking is restricted.

Parks
Amenities in City parks, including playgrounds and outdoor exercise equipment, remain open. Consistent with guidance from Toronto Public Health, outdoor playground equipment is not sanitized. Updated signage with public health guidance is posted. Residents visiting a park must practise physical distancing and avoid crowding.

More information on parks is available online.

Toronto Island ferry, photo by City of Toronto

Toronto Island Park’s public ferry and beaches
Ferry service operates daily at 50 per cent capacity with COVID-19 guidelines and procedures in place to protect passengers and staff. Tickets are limited to 5,000 per day and tickets must be purchased online in advance at toronto.ca/ferry.  Passengers are required to wear masks or face coverings and are encouraged to travel outside of peak times of 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. from the ferry terminal to the island, and 5:30 to 9 p.m. for the return trip.

Lifeguards supervise the four Toronto Island Park swimming beaches. There is plenty of room on the Island beaches. If one beach is crowded, visitors are encouraged to go to a different area. Services and amenities that are open at Toronto Island Park include washrooms, splash pad, a first aid station, William Meany Maze, some food and beverage outlets and disc golf. Other Toronto Island Park public and commercial amenities, including Centreville and boat rentals, remain closed under the current Province of Ontario emergency orders. Water taxi service to Toronto Island Park is available.

City pools and splash pads
Torontonians can cool off at more than 300 aquatic amenities this summer as the City’s 140 splash pads, 100 wading pools, 56 outdoor swimming pools and 29 indoor pools are now open. In order to allow for physical distancing, the capacity at outdoor and indoor pools is significantly reduced to 25 per cent. Swimmers are limited to 45-minute sessions to allow for cleaning. A new online reservation tool is available for indoor pool drop-in lane swim.

Some pools are closed for repair. Pool status is available online. Full details are available at toronto.ca/swim.

Public washrooms
Park washrooms are open to the public. In addition, the City has opened a number of facilities with showers, washrooms and drinking water for all individuals in need of these services. Residents using public washrooms should maintain a distance of two metres or six feet from others at all times while waiting in line and wash hands or use hand sanitizer. More details, including health guidelines for washrooms, are available on the City Services webpage.

St. Lawrence Market
The St. Lawrence Market continues to operate with enhanced precautions under the advisement of Toronto Public Health. The South (main) Market is open Tuesday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 5 a.m. to 4 p.m. The indoor and outdoor areas of the Saturday Farmers’ Market will be open from 5 a.m. to 3 p.m. as usual. The Sunday antique market remains closed until further notice.

A limited amount of indoor seating is available inside the South Market. Seating is on the lower level and has been set up to ensure that customers can remain physically distant while eating inside. Customers are reminded that eating indoors is only permitted when seated. Customers should only dine with others in their own social bubble. Additional outdoor seating is available on the South Market patio.

The use of a face mask or face covering is required at the St. Lawrence Market Complex. Entrance screenings are conducted for customers and all market personnel. Customers should bring a face covering with them to wear at the market. Even when wearing a mask or face covering, keeping physical distance from others and washing your hands often are the best ways to help stop the spread of COVID-19. More information is available at stlawrencemarket.com .

COVID-19 updates
The City’s website is updated daily with the latest health advice and information about City services, social supports and economic recovery measures. Check toronto.ca/COVID19 for answers to common questions before contacting the Toronto Public Health COVID-19 Hotline or 311. For more information about requirements during Stage 3, visit toronto.ca/ReopenTO.

As more of the city’s businesses continue to reopen, residents can learn about what to expect and what is required as Toronto moves into the new normal and they begin to visit more establishments and take part in more activities at toronto.ca/ReopenTO.

The City’s website is updated daily with the latest health advice and information about City services, social supports and economic recovery measures. Check toronto.ca/covid-19 for answers to common questions before contacting the Toronto Public Health COVID-19 Hotline or 311.

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