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Libraries, rec programs, more to reopen in Boise

Tamarack Resort Q4 2020

COVID-19 continues to impact Idaho, but more City of Boise facilities will reopen for in-person services later this month with new safety precautions. 

City facilities and services either closed down or went totally virtual in March due to stay-at-home orders issued by Governor Brad Little and the increase in cases spreading in the Gem State. The city began to slowly reopen some services earlier this year, including outdoor exhibits at Zoo Boise, curbside pick up at libraries and hybrid public meetings with both in-person and online attendance options. 

[Photo essay: COVID brings big changes to Zoo Boise]

The city plans to begin reopening more facilities and offering in-person Parks and Recreation events soon, but it does not mean things will look the same. Workers installed signs encouraging physical distancing in city buildings, plexiglass barriers went up to protect employees, group activities will limit capacity and the city will require masks.

City staff members will stand at the entrances of buildings to instruct people to wear masks and monitor the number of people in buildings. If visitors are not able to wear a face covering, they will be instructed to conduct their business virtually or wear a city-issued face shield. 

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Starting September 8, the city will be reopening even further, including:

  1. City Hall
  2. City Hall West
  3. Fort Boise’s Community Center fitness room (by appointment)
  4. Idaho Ice World for both drop-in skating and lessons
  5. Foothills Learning Center
  6. Boise Urban Garden School

Boise libraries to partially reopen

All five of the city’s public libraries will reopen to the public on September 28. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the branches will include curbside pickup and appointments for computers. Customers can browse inside the library with masks from 2 p.m. until 6 p.m. Visitors will also encounter mask ambassadors outside libraries.

The James Castle House will reopen to the public Oct. 1. This is delayed due to the new arrival of an artist in residence who must quarantine for two weeks prior to visitors being able to come inside. 

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Margaret Carmel
Margaret is a BoiseDev reporter focused on the City of Boise, housing, homelessness and growth. Contact her at margaret@boisedev.com or by phone at (757)705-8066.

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