Guiding Principles to Reopening Facilities, Programs, Service and Events


The City of Kitchener’s reopening framework is founded on the following guiding principles. Final decisions about when to open specific facilities and restart individual services will be made based on these principles:


  • The City’s top priority will be the health and safety of its staff and residents.
  • The City will take a gradual and phased approach to reopening.
  • Decisions about reopening will be guided by, and in alignment with, direction from the Province of Ontario and the Region of Waterloo’s Medical Officer of Health.
  • To the extent possible, the City will coordinate reopening plans with other local area municipalities.

Outdoor Amenities

  • Some amenities can be reactivated quickly (e.g. park benches) while others will take a significant amount of time (e.g. sportsfields).
  • It is not possible to sanitize most outdoor amenities due to the large numbers of them and limited staffing.

Indoor Facilities

  • Physical distancing, limitations on groups sizes, and sanitization within City Hall will necessitate an appointment-
based approach for the foreseeable future. 
  • Similar recreation facilities (e.g. arenas, community centres, indoor pools) will be re-opened in phases (as 
opposed to all at once) to limit safety risks, and to manage staffing and financial impacts.
  • Reopening indoor facilities will require an increased frequency and level of cleaning and sanitation.
  • There will be a lag between when the Province announces an indoor facility can reopen and when we will be able to reopen them.

Programs and Events

  • Standing Committee and Council cycle, along with legislated consultations, should begin once protocols can 
be established. Starting in August 2020, most delegations will be virtual for the foreseeable future.
  • It is expected that the province will cancel, or restrict, large events until 2021, or when a vaccine is available.
  • Restarting programs and events will be dictated by provincial restrictions on sizes of gatherings as well 
as whether or not appropriate protocols can be in place.


  • Staff (as well as the public) will be required to complete a health check prior to entering the municipal facility.
  • Staff (as well as the public) are expected to adhere to public health guidance regarding handwashing and 
physical distancing.
  • Staff will be required to complete COVID-19 related training before re-entering the workplace.
  • Staff who can continue to work from home effectively will do so for the foreseeable future.

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