Austin closes libraries, pools, golf courses and more amid coronavirus threat


AUSTIN (KXAN) — Starting Monday, Austin is closing its libraries, pools and golf courses.

Those are just some of the public spaces and services the city is shutting down in an effort to avoid crowds of 50 or more people, to comply with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending.

The CDC guidance was announced Sunday and recommends limiting these gatherings for the next eight weeks.

City closures also include athletic programs, recreation centers and cultural centers.

Officials said scheduled camps and spring break activities will take place through Wednesday but will be suspended after that. The city will continue to provide meal services for children and seniors.

The city will also reschedule all non-essential Municipal Court dockets. Over the weekend, Travis County announced it would postpone all in-person, non-emergency court hearings starting Monday.

Austin Animal Center will also close.

City officials plan to cancel or reschedule many of their in-person meetings that are not time-sensitive as well as many of its boards and commissions meetings this week.

“We have control, which is why we want everybody to be conscious, we want everybody to do the personal hygiene, wash your hands, don’t go out if you’re sick, and if we all do this together, we are going to get through this fine,” Austin’s Mayor Steve Adler said.

For now, city officials will not make changes to essential city services such as trash, recycling, and compost pick up. Austin Water, Austin Energy, first responders and transportation services will all continue to work as well.

City employees able to work from home will begin to do so. City officials said they’re working with those unable to work from home to create a safer space and provide social distancing.

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