Churchill pool, summer ice, community centres to re-open in Phase 3

Posted On Tuesday July 21, 2020

City Council approved the implementation of a number of reopening plans last night as part of Phase 3 summer operations.

Re-openings will take anywhere from 2-6 weeks so that staff can get the required resources and changes in place to safely welcome the public back into facilities. The following facilities were approved for reopening:

Grace Remus Child Care Centre
Grace Remus Child Care Centre may reopen as early as late July with a number of changes to ensure safety of children and staff, as well as the Pioneer Ridge residents located in the same building. All intergenerational programming will be suspended and there will be a physical separation of long term care and child care operations. Access to municipal child care will be prioritized based on the following criteria:

  1. Pre-COVID – 19 families receiving care (as per Ministry guidelines)
  2. Families who previously benefited from Emergency Child Care offered through Algoma Child Care Centre (frontline essential workers)
  3. Other municipal child care clients whose regular centre may not have reopened, where parents are returning or continuing to work outside of the home, as well as families with special circumstances whose children would benefit from child care services.
  4. Municipal child care staff requiring care to support their return to work.
  5. Families on the waitlist in the need of care.

Families who received care prior to COVID-19 will be contacted with further details on reopening dates, and the intake process for available spots based on the above criteria.

Churchill Pool
Churchill Pool is anticipated to reopen by early August pending a successful public health inspection, and will follow Ministry and Lifesaving Society guidelines for aquatics facilities. Limitations and modifications are expected to include:

  • Pre-booking for aquatic activities by phone as of July 27 at 9 am by calling 577-2538 (callers may leave a voicemail)
  • Screening upon entry to facility
  • Limited numbers and time of use to maintain physical distancing
  • No access to high contact surfaces (slides, diving boards, non-essential shared equipment)
  • No access to whirlpools, saunas or steam rooms
  • Increased Personal Protective Equipment, disinfection and cleaning requirements
  • Limited access to change rooms and showers

Limited activities such as:

  • Low ratio family swimming lessons (parent in water with child, instructor on deck) and private swim lessons for levels that do not require hands-on instruction
  • Pre-booked length swimming and senior swim times
  • Pre-booked family and community group swim times (limited numbers and times allowed)
  • Swim club bookings (limited numbers and activities)

Additional activities such as public recreational swimming may be phased in over a period of up to 8 weeks from reopening, subject to an evaluation process.

Community Centres
The following centres have been approved to reopen for limited activities over the upcoming weeks:

  • North McIntyre (767-1400)
  • Oliver Road (345-9531)
  • Current River (683-8451)
  • West Thunder (475-9396)

These centres are operated by external boards, and available services will vary by centre. Residents can contact the centres directly for inquiries.

Summer Ice
Current River Arena has been approved to reopen as soon as possible once necessary resources and protocols are in place. Other arenas will remain closed for the summer. Call 625-2434 as of August 4 to inquire about arena bookings that are anticipated for late August.

Outdoor Sportsfields
Limited activities at outdoor sportfields now include individual training in small groups that require minimal support from the City. User groups seeking to increase organized activities on outdoor natural turf sports fields can call Parks and Open Spaces at: 628-5717.

Other Operations Under Review
Reopening plans for Private Home Child Care, Youth Move, Kinsmen Youth Centre and the Youth Inclusion Program are currently under review.

The Recreation & Culture Division is also working to identify options and implications of reopening other public facilities. Staff anticipate a report on this and other facilities going to Council by September, pending the internal review and evaluation process.

Recommended Closures and Deferred Reopenings
Council approved the closure of the following facilities for the remainder of summer:

  • Prince Arthur’s Landing Splashpad
  • Mariner’s Hall
  • Baggage Building Arts Centre

For the most up-to-date list of service changes, and additional city service information lines, visit: www.thunderbay.ca/coronavirus. For public health information, visit:

www.ontario.ca/coronavirus - the Ontario Ministry of Health reports on the status of cases in Ontario each morning at 10:30 am.
www.TBDHU.COM/coronavirus - the Health Unit’s website contains links to credible sources of information for both the public and local health care providers.

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Contact: Stacey Levanen, Supervisor – Corporate Communications, 625-3650

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