AUSTIN, Texas - The Austin Parks & Recreation Department and Animal Services are adjusting operations to continue providing services while ensuring public health and safety in response to COVID-19.
City operations remain on modified work schedules until May 29.
The Animal Services Office (ASO) will begin offering adoption of dogs to the general public with appointment-only curbside meet and greets at the Austin Animal Center, beginning Friday, May 8. Adopters can view adoptable dogs on the Austin Animal Center website, choose up to two dogs to meet, and then contact the Animal Services Office to schedule an appointment.
Upon arrival at their appointment at the Animal Center, adopters will have time to meet and play with their chosen pups and decide if they'd like to move forward with the adoption. For more information, visit the Austin Animal Center website.
The Austin Parks & Recreation Department is introducing safety measures to manage attendance at three major city parks starting May 8.
PARD continues to monitor parks for safe usage during the city's modified operations and based on recent observations and data collection over the last two weeks, is making the following changes for Emma Long Metropolitan Park, Commons Ford Ranch Metropolitan Park, and Walter E. Long Metropolitan Park:
- Park capacity will be monitored beginning Friday, May 8
- Once capacity is reached, signage will show no additional vehicles will be admitted
- Staff will be on-site to educate park patrons and inform them of closures
- Patrons will be required starting Thursday, May 14 to obtain day passes via an online registration system or by phone from Thursday through Sunday. Limited number of passes will be available per day and no one will be allowed in without a pass
Regular entry fees will apply for Emma Long and Walter E. Long parks. Vehicle access to Commons Ford remains free, but a day pass will be required. No registration is required Monday through Wednesday.
PARD has removed parking lot barricades that unintentionally restricted emergency vehicle access due to patrons parking illegally along park entrance roads.
Golf courses, tennis centers, skeet shooting and boating concessions are allowed to operate, as long as each complies with the recent order from Gov. Greg Abbott. Some concessions have elected to remain closed.
PARD says that at this time, department facilities and park system amenities remain closed, and park system restrooms, water fountains, boat ramps, green spaces and trails are open.
FOX 7 Austin is working to keep you up to date with coronavirus, with both local and national developments. Every weekday we're live at 12 p.m. with a special show reporting the latest news, prevention tips and treatment information.
You can also get the latest COVID-19 news from around the country at coronavirusnow.com.