Baker Updates Phase II of Re-opening Plan; Releases Guidance for Restaurants, Lodging

The Baker-Polito Administration provided an update Friday (May 29) on the Reopening Massachusetts plan and preparations for Phase II. The Administration will determine the start of Phase II on June 6th.

On Monday, Governor Charlie Baker will issue an executive order with a detailed list of sectors that fall into each phase. The order will allow Phase II businesses to bring back employees in preparation for re-opening. Through this order, professional sports teams can begin practicing at their facilities in compliance with the health and safety rules that all the leagues are developing. Facilities remain closed to the public.

VIEW WORKPLACE SAFETY GUIDELINES FOR THE RESTAURANT AND LODGING INDUSTRIES

Learn more about the reopening process: www.mass.gov/reopening

Restaurant and Lodging Guidance: The Administration today issued workplace safety standards for restaurants and lodging. These workplace specific safety standards are organized around four distinct categories covering Social Distancing, Hygiene Protocols, Staffing and Operations and Cleaning and Disinfecting.

Restaurants: Outdoor dining will begin at the start of Phase II. Indoor dining will begin later within Phase II, subject to public health data. Even when indoor seating is permitted, use of outdoor space will be encouraged for all restaurants.

Social distancing guidance includes spacing tables six feet apart with a maximum party size of six people. The use of bars, except for spaced table seating, will not be permitted. For hygiene protocols, utensils and menus should be kept clean through single use or with strict sanitation guidelines, reservations or call ahead seating is recommended and contactless payment, mobile ordering or text on arrival for seating will also be encouraged.

Restaurants will be expected to follow cleaning and disinfecting guidelines, in accordance with CDC guidance. This includes closing an establishment temporarily if there is a case of COVID-19 in an establishment.

For full restaurant guidance, click here.

Lodging: Hotels, motels and other lodging businesses will be allowed to expand their operations in Phase II. Lodging safety standards apply to all forms of lodging including hotels, motels, inns, bed and breakfasts, short term residential rentals including Airbnb and VRBO.

Event spaces, like ballrooms and meeting rooms, will remain closed. On-site restaurants, pools, gyms, spas, golf courses and other amenities at lodging sites may operate only as these categories are authorized to operate in accordance with the phased re-opening plan. Lodging operators also must inform guests of the Commonwealth’s policy urging travelers to self-quarantine for 14 days when arriving from out-of-state.

For full lodging guidance, click here.

On May 18th, the Baker-Polito Administration released Reopening Massachusetts, the Reopening Advisory Board’s report, which details a four-phased strategy to responsibly reopen businesses and activities while continuing to fight COVID-19.

VIEW THE FULL REPORT

VIEW GUIDANCE FOR SPECIFIC INDUSTRIES

‘Neat Neighbors’ Contest Underway

Mayor Thomas Koch announces the return of the City’s “Neat Neighbors” contest that recognizes property owners that do an excellent job maintaining their home or business. Friends, relatives, neighbors, or strangers can nominate an address for recognition from now through Labor Day by calling (617) 376-1251 or emailing pdoherty@quincyma.gov.

“This has been a challenging year where we all seek some normalcy in the face of the pandemic,” Koch said. “For many people, myself included, doing some creative work in the yard becomes an outlet. We hope to recognize those folks that help our city look beautiful by making their properties look beautiful.”

Each nominated property will be reviewed to ensure it meets the requirements for property maintenance. Once the property qualifies, winners will be selected at random to avoid competitive judgments. Qualifying properties will have maintained lawns, plantings, and homes in good repair.

A special category will be added for business and commercial properties this year.

Added Koch, “This has been a rough year so far for businesses and we can understand that aesthetics aren’t the top priority right now. However, there are still many folks that do a fantastic job of presenting their businesses and we want to make sure we applaud those that are able to do that.”

There will be twenty-five residential properties and ten commercial properties chosen as winners. Those properties selected as winners will receive a $30 gift certificate at a Quincy-based garden center to recognize their efforts and help continue their work.

State Planning How To Re-Open Schools This Fall

By SCOTT JACKSON

Gov. Charlie Baker on Wednesday said it is critically important that Massachusetts students are able to return to school in the fall after they spent much of the spring learning from home because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking at press conference in East Boston, Baker said it is important that students, who have been kept out of classrooms since March, be able to return in the fall. The governor said Jeff Riley, the state’s commissioner of elementary and secondary education, has put together a team to determine how best to re-open schools amid the pandemic.

“There are schools all over the world that are open. While I certainly think a lot of those school systems and school districts and countries have done some pretty collaborative and imaginative things, I certainly believe we have the ability here to do imaginative and creative things that are safe for kids and faculty and administrators as well,” Baker said when asked about re-opening schools.

“Commissioner Riley has a fairly large team he has put together that represents a lot of points of view to start working through this issue. I feel terrible – and I know almost everybody does – about how much school our kids lost as a result of this pandemic and I think we all believe it is critically important to do all we can to make sure they don’t lose another half year or God forbid longer than that.”

“There are a lot of kids for whom school is a really important part of their life for reasons that go beyond academics,” the governor added. “I think we really need to work hard to make sure we come up with a workable plan.”

When asked what the plan might entail, Baker said it would be too soon to say because it is still being worked out. He added that it is important for the plan to be released well ahead of the start of the new school year.

“This isn’t the sort of thing that anybody thinks you can present to people on Aug. 20 and think that’s going to be particularly helpful,” Baker said. “People know that this is something people need to see and start thinking about and have a chance to kick the tires on sooner rather than later.”

Quincy Firefighters Battle Pair Of House Fires

By SCOTT JACKSON

Quincy firefighters fought a pair of house fires Friday night – one in Houghs Neck and one in North Quincy – that displaced at least ten residents.

Neither fire is considered suspicious, according to Deputy Fire Chief Timothy Burchill, and no injuries were reported.

Firefighters were called to single-family home at 25 Peterson Rd. in Houghs Neck around 10 p.m. on Friday, Burchill said. The fire began in a deck area in the front left part of the house and extended into the walls.

The family living inside the house was already outside before fighters arrived.

The first firefighters who responded to the scene had issues drawing water from temporary hydrants in the area, Burchill stated, but were able to knock down the fire in about 20 minutes once they were able to tap into the hydrants.

Engine 6 and Ladder remained on scene after the fire was knocked down as a precautionary measure.

The fire on Peterson Road caused an estimated $50,000 in damage. Burchill on Wednesday said he was uncertain if the cause of that fire had been determined but said did not appear suspicious.

The second fire was reported on Holmes Street in North Quincy at 11:30 p.m., Burchill said. The fire began in the rear of 69 Holmes St., an unoccupied multi-family residence, and then spread to 67 Holmes St., another multi-family residence.

The ten occupants living at 67 Holmes St. made it out safely and were given contact information for the Red Cross.

The fire on Holmes Street went to three alarms, Burchill said, and two ladder companies from Boston assisted Quincy firefighters on scene. The scene was cleared by 3 a.m.

Burchill said the Holmes Street fire caused an estimated $300,000 to $400,000 in damage.

The state Fire Marshal’s Office was called to the scene to help investigate the Holmes Street fire, Burchill said. He stated the damage was too extensive to determine how the fire started, but it was not considered suspicious.

Burchill credited the firefighters for their efforts to put out the two fires Friday night and noted several of the 35 new firefighters the city hired earlier this year were on duty that evening.

“They all performed very well, very professionally,” Burchill said. “That there were no injuries is a feather in their cap.”

In addition, the city’s two new firetrucks – Rescue 1 and Ladder 2 – responded to both scenes. Burchill said their performance on Friday was outstanding, adding that Ladder 2 – a tiller truck the city purchased for its ability to navigate tight streets – “got into position with no problems at all.”

State Working To Increase COVID-19 Testing Capacity

By SCOTT JACKSON

Gov. Charlie Baker said Massachusetts could become the worldwide leader in COVID-19 testing by more than doubling its capacity to test for the virus by the end of the year.

The governor also urged residents to “respect the virus” and keep taking steps to halt the spread of the disease.

Baker and Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera appeared together at a press conference Friday to announce the launch of a drive-through testing facility in the Merrimack Valley community with the ability to test up to 1,000 residents each day. The city of Lawrence provided $1 million in funding to open the test center.

There are now more than 250 COVID-19 test sites located throughout Massachusetts, Baker said, with the capacity to perform some 30,000 tests each day. He said the state has prepared a plan to increase that number to 45,000 by the end of July and 75,000 by the end of the year.

If implemented, Baker said that would make Massachusetts the worldwide leader in per capita testing.

The growth in testing capacity means anyone who is symptomatic or has been in close contact with someone who has tested positive is now eligible to be tested, he added.

The governor said, however, that testing capacity alone won’t be enough to stop COVID-19. The state’s residents, he said, need to continue their efforts to slow its spread – including social distancing, frequent handwashing, wearing a mask or face covering when needed, and cleaning surfaces.

“While testing is a valuable tool in the fight against COVID, it is not…the only one. People have a big role to play in this with respect to the behavior that you exhibit and the behavior you deliver every single day – social distancing, hygiene, covering your nose and your mouth and wiping surfaces frequently,” Baker said.

“If you keep doing your part, we’ll keep doing ours and we will get through this together.”

Rivera compared following the steps that Baker outlined to following the recipe for baking a cake.

“You have to do the testing and the masks and the hygiene and the distancing and staying home if you’re sick – that makes a nice cake,” Rivera said. “Otherwise, you have a coronavirus cake. No one wants to eat that.”

With Memorial Day on the horizon, Baker said it is important for residents to keep social distancing and cover their faces if necessary.

“Respect the virus and understand that distancing and face coverings if you can’t stay distant are your two greatest allies in preventing the spread,” the governor said, adding that between 20 and 40 percent of people who are infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 never show symptoms of the disease.

“If you feel healthy and you feel good…if you can’t distance yourself, you should wear a face covering, because you may in fact be a carrier.”

Baker said the steps taken by residents to date has allowed the state to begin a phased re-opening of businesses, but it is too soon to let up.

“People have worked really hard and given up a tremendous amount over the course of the past eight or ten weeks to bend the trend on this and we succeeded. It’s because of the work that everyone did that we are now in a position…we can start talking about a gradual, careful, data-driven phased re-opening,” the governor said.

“Don’t let a few nice days step on that. We need to continue to make the kind of progress that we have all made in battling this thing for the past two or three months.”

Rivera – who announced all public events in Lawrence would be cancelled through December – said anyone who doubts the seriousness of the pandemic should look at the obituary pages in newspapers.

“People are dying,” he said. “We sent tons of kids to fight in Vietnam. Nineteen Lawrence boys lost their lives in Vietnam. In this short period, we’ve lost 109 souls.

“The governor is right, we have to respect this virus.”

Bay State Businesses Begin Re-Opening

By SCOTT JACKSON

State officials on Monday detailed plans to begin re-opening Massachusetts businesses that have been closed since March amid the coronavirus pandemic, with some industries able to re-open effective immediately and more set to resume next week.

Gov. Charlie Baker, speaking at the State House, said residents’ efforts to slow the spread of the virus have made the re-opening the state’s economy possible.

“We have been doing our jobs to fight back and, as a result, positive case rates are moving in the right direction and hospitalizations are down,” the governor said.

The plan for re-opening was developed by an advisory board Baker assembled that included representatives from various industries, local elected officials, and public health experts. As part of the plan, the state will provide guidance for each industry ahead of its re-opening to protect customers and employees.

“This is something no one has ever done before – shutter and then re-open everything from a beach front to a factory floor with standards in place to slow the spread of a highly contagious virus,” Baker said.

“This guidance asks people to change behaviors. It changes the way some of our favorite places look and feel. This is not permanent – at some point there will be treatments and ultimately a vaccine – but for the foreseeable future, everyone needs to continue to do the right things to bring the fight to the virus so we can continue to move forward.”

Businesses are also required to create a COVID-19 control plan before being allowed to re-open; those plans do not need to be submitted to the state but must be kept on site. Essential businesses that have remained open through the outbreak have until May 25 to complete their plan.

Construction sites and manufacturing facilities were allowed to open effective Monday. Also allowed to re-open Monday were places of worship, with guidelines in place that promote social distancing and encourage services to be held outdoors.

Additional businesses will be allowed to re-open May 25, including some personal services such as barbershops, hair salons, pet groomers and car washes. Offices will also be able to re-open next week at 25 percent capacity, except in Boston, and labs can also re-open. Retailers, including adult-use marijuana establishments, will be able to re-open with remote fulfilment and curbside pickup.

Many outdoor spaces can open starting May 25 as well including beaches; parks; drive-in movie theaters; select athletic fields; many outdoor adventure activities; most fishing, hunting and boating; and outdoor gardens, zoos, reserves and public installations.

Additional sectors could re-open on June 1, including office space in Boston.

Baker had previously said the state’s businesses would re-open on a four-phased basis. Baker on Monday said each phase would last at three weeks, depending on the latest data concerning the virus.

“Each phase will last at least three weeks but may last longer if the public health data doesn’t support moving forward,” Baker said.

Those businesses allowed to re-open through June 1 are all included in phase one.

Businesses in the second phase include indoor retail spaces, hotels, and other personal services such as nail salons, day spas, massage therapy, tattoo parlors and electrolysis studios. Restaurants – which have been limited to take-out and delivery only – will likewise be able to re-open with limited capacity.

Also included in the second phase are additional outdoor recreation, such as miniature golf, go karts and batting cages. Some outdoor performances will be allowed starting in phase two, recreational day camps will be allowed to open, and youth sports can start some activities.

The third phase includes bars – defined as establishments that serve alcohol without offering food – gyms and fitness studios, movie theaters, museums and some performance venues such as concert halls and theaters. Residential summer camps could open in phase three, as could indoor recreation like batting cages and go karts. Sightseeing – bus tours, duck tours, harbor cruises and whale watching – and tours are included in phase three as well. Amusement parks could re-open in phase three or four.

Larger venues, including arenas, stadiums, race tracks and night clubs, would re-open in the fourth phase. The government’s guidelines also say it is to be determined when sports teams could be allowed to play without fans in attendance.

The re-opening of historical sites is to be determined, according to the state, but will not happen in the first phase; state officials are drawing up a comprehensive tourism plan.

The state’s restrictions on gatherings of more than 10 people remains in place as does a revised stay-at-home advisory, which is now known as a safer-at-home advisory. The new advisory instructs everyone to stay home unless they are headed to a newly opened facility or activity. It also advises those over the age of 65 and those with underlying health conditions to stay home with the exception of trips required for health care, groceries, or that are otherwise absolutely necessary.

“It is important for everyone to remember it is safer at home,” Baker said.

The governor’s order requiring residents to wear a mask or face covering inside businesses or outdoors if social distancing is not possible remains in effect. The governor said residents should continue to take steps to stop the spread of the virus, including frequent handwashing, maintaining six feet of separation between individuals, and staying home when sick.

“Everyone has a responsibility to wash your hands, distance yourself from others and be vigilant about symptoms. You can stay home, and you should stay home if you feel sick. How well everyone does these things will determine how long until we move into later phases,” Baker said.

“Collectively we have flattened the curve and avoided a spike in cases that would have broken our health care system, but if we don’t keep up the fight and don’t do the things that we all know we have to do and know we can do, we run the risk of a creating a second spike in the fall.”

The information released by the state Monday did not include a timeline for re-opening childcare facilities. Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito said employees who are headed back to work in phase one could use the state’s emergency daycare system if necessary; the system has room for up to 10,000 children and has been running at 35 percent capacity.

“The system has capacity to serve more families, to provide care options, as more workers head back to work and sectors become active again,” Polito said.

State agencies are developing guidelines for re-opening childcare facilities, she added, and those guidelines will be reviewed by Boston Children’s Hospital.

Polito said the MBTA would continue running on a limited schedule during phase one of the re-opening in order to maximize employee and rider safety. The T will ramp up to a modified version of full service by phase three. Commuters will still be required to wear a mask or face covering while riding the MBTA.

Businesses are encouraged to stagger employees’ schedules and continue allowing remote work to reduce demand on the public transit system.

“Employers are encouraged to stagger schedules and implement work-from-home policies to reduce demand during rush hours,” Polito said.

The Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance on Monday said the state’s re-opening plan would benefit larger businesses and could force small businesses to close.

“Today, if you’re a billion-dollar business or a national retail chain, all is well. If you are a Massachusetts small business, you could be facing a continued shut down well into late July,” said Paul Craney, a spokesman for the group.

“The most vulnerable population in the governor’s executive order are these businesses that will be continually forced into the red for over the next 100 days. Many of our favorite retail stores, lodging facilities, restaurants, bars, gyms, and museums will simply go out of business.

“The governor’s re-opening plan doesn’t reflect the sense of urgency currently pervading the small business community. For businesses, every day is essential. They have waited 56 days to open, some will have to wait another 70 under the Governor’s plan. How can any small businesses outlined in phase three ever be expected to stay in business after nearly 130 days shut down?”

“Big national chains have been picked as winners since day one. Under the governor’s plan, many of our small businesses are unfortunately picked as losers.”

Koch To Introduce Budget Monday

By SCOTT JACKSON

Mayor Thomas Koch is set to unveil his proposed budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1 during Monday’s City Council meeting.

The meeting, which is being held via videoconference, begins at 5:30 p.m. The public can watch the meeting on Zoom; the meeting ID number is 854 3078 1511 and the dial-in number for audio only is 646-558-8656. The meeting will also air on QATV Channel 9 (government access).

Koch has traditionally introduced his budget proposal on the first Monday in May, but he delayed doing so this year because of the financial uncertainty by the COVID-19 pandemic. The mayor has told the School Committee he does not foresee any layoffs or cuts to city services as a result of the budget; he also wants to avoid a property tax increase next year.

“The goal…is that we have a budget that is fairly lean, doesn’t have any cuts to services and will not result in a tax increase in the fall. If there is a time that we should try to mitigate any impact on property tax increases, I think it’s a year like this,” Koch told the school board April 29. He has re-iterated those points at two subsequent committee meetings.

The council’s finance committee will meet in the coming weeks to review the budget proposal; councillors can cut money from the budget, but not add to it. The council also only sets the bottom line budget for the Quincy Public Schools; the school board is responsible for setting the district’s budget.

In addition to introducing the budget, Koch will also submit a request to borrow up to $14 million to convert the office building at 178 Old Colony Ave. in Wollaston in to a special education learning center.

The council in November approved Koch’s request to borrow $8.5 million to purchase the building and make initial upgrades to the facility, including the installation of a new elevator. School officials have said the new learning center could open as soon as the summer of 2021 and could accommodate up to 300 students on the autism spectrum from pre-kindergarten to eighth grade.

Also on Monday, Council President Nina Liang will introduce an ordinance that would allow the city to fine residents and businesses $50 if they place trash bags curbside without placing them in an acceptable receptacle.

Overnight Lane Closures On I-93

Overnight work on the Squantum Street Bridge will require lane closures on I-93 southbound and northbound in Quincy on Friday night and into Saturday morning.

The work will be taking place beginning Friday at 8 p.m. until 7 a.m. Saturday.

Travel will be permitted through the work zone, however, work will require one or more lane closures on I-93 in order to clean and paint the Squantum Street Bridge. Work continues after this weekend, taking place in overnight hours, Sunday through Thursdays, with occasional weekend work again as weather allows.

Traffic control devices including variable message signs will be utilized along with police details to assist with traffic management.  Message boards have been placed in advance of next week’s scheduled work.

The schedule for this work is weather dependent and subject to change without notice.

MassDOT encourages drivers to reduce speed and use caution while approaching and traveling through the work zone.

For more information on traffic conditions travelers are encouraged to:

Dial 511 before heading out onto the roadways and select a route to hear real-time conditions.

Visit mass511.com, a website which provides real-time traffic and incident advisory information, access to traffic cameras, and allows users to subscribe to text and email alerts for traffic conditions.

Follow MassDOT on Twitter @MassDOT to receive regular updates on road and traffic conditions.

Download MassDOT’s GoTime mobile app and view real-time traffic conditions before setting out on the road.

Planning Underway For Summer Graduations

By SCOTT JACKSON

Mayor Thomas Koch said his staff is in the process of planning summer graduation ceremonies at Veterans Memorial Stadium for seniors at the city’s two high schools.

The graduation ceremonies had been scheduled for next month – Quincy High School on June 8 and North Quincy High School on June 9 – but the School Committee on Wednesday formally voted to postpone those ceremonies to a date to be determined. The postponement comes amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The seniors will now officially graduate June 10 – when the superintendent announces they have met all the qualifications to do so during a school board meeting set for that night – with the graduation ceremonies later in the summer. In addition, a senior tribute video, honoring members of the graduating class, should be released the week of June 10.

Koch, the committee’s chairman, on May 6 suggested improvements made to Veterans Memorial Stadium by the Boston Cannons, in particular replacing bleachers with seats, would make it possible to hold the graduation ceremonies there this summer.

On Wednesday, Koch said he and his staff were developing plans to hold graduation ceremonies at the stadium this summer. The ceremonies, he said, would be designed with social-distancing guidelines in mind.

“I don’t have a formal plan to put in front of you, but I do think what I had said before is very, very doable. That is a more limited approach to the stage, maybe more limited speaking, spreading the kids out on the field…and then perhaps up to two tickets per family that can be assigned specific seating in the stadium,” Koch said.

“We can spread them out throughout the stadium so that there is that social distancing between families.”

Whatever rules are in place – including a limit on the number of tickets students will receive – must be adhered to, Koch said.

“I think we have to be firm. Everyone has special circumstances and all, but these are unique circumstances. We have got to the stand by the two-ticket rule,” he said. “Whatever we decide on in the end, we have to be firm about it.”

The mayor said he has heard from some people who have suggested families not be allowed to attend, but he believes they should be there.

“There are some people who have said to me, ‘maybe the family doesn’t have to be there,’” Koch said. “If you can have a loved one or two there…I think it is far more valuable and meaningful to the graduate.”

The mayor said the plan could be finalized within two weeks and made public at that time. When the ceremony could be held is still uncertain.

“Obviously, the date is up in the air. We’re not going to have a date for a period of time yet,” Koch said. “It would be great to have it before the end of June, but I don’t even want to begin to guess on that.”

Committee member Paul Bregoli said Koch’s concept was doable and something the seniors deserve to have.

“I’m glad to hear the mayor is moving forward with this plan,” Bregoli said. “I think it is doable. It is something I think the kids deserve and I think we should do everything that we can in our power to make sure it happens.”

Committee member Doug Gutro thanked Koch for trying to work out a way to hold graduation ceremonies in person.

“Thanks to the mayor for being pragmatic and trying to come up with a responsible and safe way to potentially have an in-person meeting,” Gutro said. “I know a lot goes into that and events, as they evolve, could negate that as being an option at the end of the day.”

Gutro also suggested the presidents of both high schools’ senior classes be given the chance to speak at an upcoming School Committee to share their experiences in recent months. In addition, he asked that school officials reach out to notable alumni from both schools who could appear in the tribute video school officials are working on. Superintendent Richard DeCristofaro was receptive to both of Gutro’s suggestions.

Anthony Andronico, the committee’s vice chairman, asked Koch if the city planned to install banners honoring the seniors on light posts in the city. Koch said there would not enough light posts to honor each senior individually – as some communities have done – but banners honoring the class as a whole could be installed in the city’s business districts.

 

Quincy Basketball, Tennis Courts To Re-Open

By SCOTT JACKSON

Quincy will re-open its basketball and tennis courts next week on a limited basis after they had been closed amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Mayor Thomas Koch and Commissioner of Natural Resources David Murphy on Wednesday announced the courts would re-open on May 18.

Murphy said officials identified 22 locations throughout the city that could re-open. The courts will be open from 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Basketball courts will be for single-use only – with the exception of children playing with parents – and the tennis courts will be for singles play only. Recreation staff will be hired to oversee the on-site registration process and to enforce social distancing guidelines.

Murphy said residents should not confuse the staff onsite with the summer recreation program leaders. The city is awaiting state guidance before determining if the summer recreation program can go forward this year.

“This is not the rec camp program,” Murphy said. “We are waiting for guidance from the governor on that. This is simply staff overseeing the tennis and basketball courts. People should not send their kids down to the local neighborhood park anticipating a rec leader will be there.”

The city’s parks have remained open, though the basketball and tennis courts had been closed. Koch said residents should feel free to get outside and exercise.

“We have had QPD help us patrol some of the park areas and I think some things get misinterpreted. People reached out over the weekend to me that they were asked to leave Faxon Park and they were just walking the trails. That should not be a problem,” the mayor said. “We have kept the parks open for single use like jogging or walking. It was the team play stuff that was the issue when you could not social distance.

“Now we are getting into much better weather and we do have some beautiful park spaces, so we want to encourage people to use them under the limitations that the Department of Natural Resources has come up with.”

Koch encouraged younger residents to apply for the openings in the recreation program.

“This is also an opportunity to get our young people working and earning income,” he said. “By opening up our parks, we are providing safe, recreational opportunities for residents and hopefully stimulating our local economy by creating income for Quincy residents. Recreation is probably the only department that has 100 percent Quincy residents.”

Playgrounds and tot lots have also been closed since the start of the outbreak. Murphy said they will still remain closed for the time being, “because there is still inconsistent information out there about how the virus lives on metal and plastic surfaces.”

Tennis and basketball will be available at the following facilities:

Fenno Street, Beechwood Knoll, Squantum/Wendall Moses, Russell Park tennis courts/track, Mass Fields, Bishop, LaBrecque, Snug Harbor, Broad Meadows, Forbes Hill, O’Rourke, Bernazzani, Faxon Park, Smith and Quarry Street, South-West Middle School, Fore River Field, Perkins Field, Wollaston School, Cavanaugh Stadium, Flynn Playground, Marshall School and Bradford Street Playground.

The sites were chosen based on providing a geographic representation of every neighborhood. Certain facilities, like Welcome Young Park, Flaherty Park and the Pond Street Skatepark, are under construction and not available to be opened, city officials said.

The city’s new dog park on Quarry Street will be opened with restrictions this June. Recreation staff will limit the capacity of the park to six people per half-hour. Dog owners are welcome to use the municipal park system, providing that they adhere to both leash and pooper-scooper laws.