City Announces Closures, Cancelations to Stem COVID-19 Spread

Alexandria, La. (March 13, 2020) — The City of Alexandria, following the guidance of Gov. John Bel Edwards as well as public health advisors, is canceling all planned public events that would attract 250 or more people, effective immediately through April 13. Additionally, the city is suspending activities until further notice at all city-owned facilities where the general public gathers, regardless of event size, effective at the close of business today.

“Our primary concern has to be the health and safety of our citizens,” said Alexandria Mayor Jeffery W. Hall said. “We will immediately begin following Gov. Edward’s directive. I understand this will cause some disappointment, but we would rather err on the side of caution. It is critical that we do everything we can to limit the spread of this illness. We can reschedule events. Right now, we need to be focused on trying to reduce the risk of infection locally. Again, we are encouraging everyone to follow the basic safety guidelines that have been announced, such as washing your hands regularly and staying home if you feel sick.”

Effective at the close of business today, operations are suspended until further notice for all city-owned public meeting facilities, including Convention Hall, the Randolph Riverfront Center, the Coughlin-Saunders Performing Arts Center and all community centers. Additionally, recreation facilities including the Alexandria Zoo, Links on the Bayou and the Youth and Teen Center will be closed until further notice. Bathrooms will also be locked at public parks. Adoption services at the Animal Shelter are also suspended until further notice.

Public events that are canceled include the Unity in the Park event planned for Saturday, Downtown Rocks on March 19 and 26 and the Community-Wide Easter Egg Hunt scheduled for April 4.

The ATRANS bus service will continue to operate as scheduled at this time, however the City Trolleys will not be in service until further notice. Also, Alexandria Police Department and the Alexandria Fire Department, as well as the Alexandria Utility Systems will operate as normal. However, the APD Citizen’s Academy scheduled to start March 24 has been postponed.

Customers wanting to pay bills or do business with the city are encouraged to utilize online payment methods, the payment drop box or the drive-thru lane to minimize face-to-face exposure. Dropbox customers should use a check or money order, not cash.

City officials will continue to monitor the situation and remain in contact with the Governor’s Office, state agencies and public health officials.