Chicago Park District To Open Splash Pools; Beaches, Other Pools Remain Closed

Splash Pool

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- As Chicago's July heat wave continues along with the COVID-19 pandemic, there is at least some help for those looking to cool off.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot said Monday she has ordered the Chicago Park District to open its splash pools, but beaches and other swimming pools will remain closed.

It’s true that beaches and some pools have opened in other parts of the country, even those with surges in COVID-19 cases. But, Mayor Lightfoot said don’t expect beaches to reopen here "anytime soon." 

“The challenge with the beaches — and with swimming pools, let’s just add that in — is that they are ripe for congregate gathering and not social distancing...Given where we are — which is progress, but we have some concerns — we’re not gonna take any steps that could tip us...backwards. So, for now, the beaches and swimming pools will remain closed," Lightfoot said.

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Chicago has has several days with temperatures in the 90s, with that trend continuing throughout the week, before breaking on Saturday.

“We’ve got cooling centers that we’ve opened up. We’ve got cooling buses that are gonna be available. We’re gonna be opening up the splash pools in the parks, so that adults and children can get some relief,” Lightfoot said. “But I don’t see a circumstance yet, because I don’t think the public health metrics will allow for it, where we’re gonna be opening up the beaches or swimming pools.”