AUSTIN, Texas - Texas Parks & Wildlife has announced that, after careful consideration of the ongoing coronavirus situation, Texas State Parks will be limiting park programming and closing some public access.
According to a press release from TPWD, public access to park headquarters, visitor centers, and park stores have closed.
The announcement from TPWD comes the same day as Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued a public health disaster for the state, closing all restaurant dining rooms, gyms, and schools.
“Our main priority has always been the health and wellbeing of our visitors and staff, and in order to maintain this standard to the best of our abilities TPWD facilities will be modifying operations as a precautionary step towards protecting public health,” said Carter Smith, TPWD executive director.
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Other services will also be suspended at this time, including equipment rentals, interpreting programs, and all cash transactions where feasible. Park visitors are encouraged to utilize the self-pay station, online reservation systems, and credit card transactions.
“While we have worked hard to provide access to state parks through much of Spring Break, we have now reached a point where changes are imperative for safety reasons. I am grateful to our State Parks team and volunteers for their valiant work during this exceedingly difficult time and thank our visitors for their patience and understanding as we continue to evaluate additional measures to ensure the safety of everyone in the parks,” Smith said.
TPWD law enforcement and boat registration offices will also be closing. Texans needing to purchase hunting and fishing licenses, boat and motor owner transfers, and boat registration renewals are encouraged to visit the Texas Parks & Wildlife website or call the department at 512-389-4800.