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New park and playground restrictions implemented

Emily Burkhard
Updated: March 28, 2020 01:59 PM
Created: March 27, 2020 11:17 PM

COLONIE - Many people are looking for a change of scenery, especially after two weeks at home due to coronavirus closures. But, health officials are concerned that playgrounds are becoming breeding grounds.

The Crossings of Colonie, one of the most popular parks in the Capital Region, was absolutely packed with cars Friday evening. But come Saturday, you won't see any vehicles there.

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The Town of Colonie has decided to close The Crossings to vehicle traffic, effective 8 p.m. Friday (3/27) until further notice. Those who can walk there are still permitted on the property.

Colonie police said the goal is to encourage people to get out and recreate in their own neighborhoods.

"But if you don't have a neighborhood to walk in you're on a Main Street, I mean it's going to be hard for seniors to cope with this,” Colonie resident Jeanne Moseley said.

Moseley, a type two diabetic, walks at The Crossings every day.

"This is our out, this is the only out that we have you know so I don't know how they're going to handle that,” Moseley said.

Denise Clow lives in Rensselaer County, but also walks at The Crossings every day with her family.

"We can't be together in homes so this is the open that I chose to share with my family because we don't live together,” she said.

Clow agrees with closing off playgrounds, jungle gyms and basketball courts to reduce the spread, but she feels there no reason why people exercising can't still practice proper social distancing, even on a busy day.

"It's big enough and I kind of see everybody keeping their distance so I don't see the issue with that part of it at all,” she said.

Moseley and Clow both said they're both considering parking on the side streets off Albany-Shaker Road and walking to the park.

"I won't do anything I'm not allowed to do by law but I will still come. I still want to walk here,” Clow said.

Similar restrictions are being implemented in the City of Schenectady. On Friday Mayor Gary McCarthy announced equipment at city parks and playgrounds will be closed to the public until further notice. This also includes all basketball courts, tennis courts, and other facilities within the parks.

The City of Albany is installing new signage in city parks saying playground equipment is closed, and no one should be engaging in contact activities. Should contact activities continue to be witnessed, the city may be forced to close basketball courts, tennis courts, and the Washington Park skatepark.

Stay tuned to NewsChannel 13 for updates.


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