City Hall opens today; marks another step forward in recovery process
Cambridge, June 15, 2020 – Starting today, the first floor of City Hall is open to the public for in-person inquiries and bill payments.
Customer-related services will be consolidated at the Service Cambridge counter with additional kiosks in the Bowman Room (both located on the first floor). Residents are encouraged to continue to do as much city business online and over the phone, as possible.
Residents who visit City Hall will see enhanced health and safety precautions in place, including plexiglass screens, floor markings to support physical distancing requirements, and signage to help with traffic flow and maximum occupancy. The public is asked to use the entrance on Dickson Street. City Hall will be open 8:30am to 4:30pm during weekdays.
At this point, there will be no non-essential gatherings of staff and public. Meetings will be online or teleconference. Businesses can continue to contact INVEST Cambridge for phone consultations.
Today’s opening marks another step forward in the City’s recovery process. In mid-March, City Hall and other facilities were closed to the public; as well recreational programs and events were cancelled, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The City of Cambridge is working to safely reopen City facilities, services and amenities using a staged approach, guided by:
· The advice and direction of public health officials;
· The Province of Ontario’s three-phased approach to reopening businesses, services, and public spaces; and
· Ongoing collaboration with the Region of Waterloo and area municipalities.
Ensuring the health and safety of all residents remains the City’s top priority. As more people return to work and daily activities, the City will continue to determine how to adjust services, programs and operations to enable physical distancing.
“Over the past months, I believe we have acted and responded quickly to the evolution of the pandemic, working together with our regional and municipal partners, businesses, and community organizations to ensure that we are doing everything we can to prevent the spread of COVID-19,” said Cambridge Mayor Kathryn McGarry. “We are now starting to welcome back the public and staff to City Hall and to slowly open our community amenities, but let’s stay safe. It’s everyone’s collective responsibility to be careful and to follow public health measures so that we can successfully recover from the challenges of this period.”
Key City Actions to Date
· Dedicated pandemic response and recovery teams activated.
· Implemented a virtual and essential workforce, as well as redeployment of staff to maintain city services.
· Expanded our bylaw enforcement team to ensure education and safety.
· Working with partners to support the vulnerable population.
· Holding virtual council meetings to ensure Council can continue to serve the public.
· Working to keep connected with the community through our #recfromhome online program, expanded our phone- based outreach supports for seniors, and other online programs.
· Developed an Economic Response Plan to support local residents, businesses, and workers during the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
· Implemented a cost-containment plan for the City to help manage costs and offset lost revenue.
· Ongoing support for our local business community through a dedicated webpage, survey, outreach and #orderfromhome social media campaign.
· Introduced an expedited process for local businesses to expand patios and outdoor space.
· Worked with vendors to create a safe reopening plan for the Cambridge Farmers’ Market.
· Created an archives project to document the pandemic experience from the Cambridge perspective.