Parks Conservancy reminds visitors to practice social distancing


Paul Guggenheimer / Trib Live

With state and local parks, state forests and trails seeing record numbers of visitors, the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy is renewing its call for everyone to practice safe physical distancing.

Proper physical distancing is maintaining a minimum of six feet from others.

The parks conservancy also urges visitors to follow Gov. Tom Wolf’s universal masking request while using city parks. Pennsylvania’s stay-at-home mandate allows individuals to leave their homes for outdoor activity, such as walking, hiking or running with proper physical distancing.

From Feb. 16 to March 29, park usage increased by 83% in Allegheny County, according to Google’s recent covid-19 community mobility report.

“The increase in park usage is not surprising to me,” said Jayne Miller, Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy president and chief executive officer.

“Our parks offer everyone in our community an opportunity to connect with nature and free access to the stress relief that nature and physical activity can provide during this uncertain time. It’s up to us to keep each other safe and keep our park system open,” Miller said.

City parks remain open unless deemed otherwise by the City of Pittsburgh. The city has temporarily closed all city playgrounds, basketball courts and overlooks. Group sports are also prohibited in city parks. In addition, the Parks Conservancy has postponed all programming and special events through May 10.

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