The Seaside City Council voted unanimously at its May 11 meeting to reopen the Seaside Beach at 6 a.m. Monday, May 18. In addition to the oceanfront beach area that runs approximately two miles in total length (from the Cove area to the Necanicum Estuary), the council motion also included the reopening of parks, waterways and trails throughout Seaside.
Clatsop County submitted their application the state on May 11.
As part of the State of Oregon phasing plan, playground equipment is not included in this reopening and will still be closed to the public until phase two requirements have been met. The Oregon Recreation and Park Association has provided guidelines for indoor and outdoor recreation and that document can be downloaded via the following link: www.orpa.org/page/covid19.
Council President Randy Frank said even with the influx of visitors they saw during spring break, they saw no data that it had impacted the health and welfare of the community.
The reopening of the beach, parks, waterways and trails removes restrictions that have been in place since March 23 in Seaside. However, the City of Seaside, Clatsop County and the State of Oregon continue to remind people there remain risks and that there are still plenty of things we need to do to keep ourselves safe and healthy. State guidelines ask that citizens remain at home if sick, practice good hygiene with frequent hand washing and the use of sanitizer and avoid touching your face.
“I would like to see our hotels beginning to take reservations in June so that as they are ramping up, we can see what kind of business is going to return,” Mayor Jay Barber said. “I hope that will happen so our hotels, our restaurants, our retail shops, others can get a good start on their summer business to be able to survive the winter ahead.”
Social distancing of six feet – though it may be more difficult with people returning to businesses and the beach – should still be practiced, and face coverings should be used in public spaces.
“At any time we can come in and close this down and the city manager still has the power to take that action,” Councilor Seth Morrisey said. “We are fluid here and we can make adjustments if we need to.
A comprehensive framework for reopening Oregon, including the phase requirements for counties, and statewide guidance can be found at govstatus.egov.com/or-covid-19. The City of Seaside thanks its citizens and businesses for their patience during this difficult time period.
Councilor Steve Wright said reopening hotels is a local decision. Morrisey said they are waiting to reopen hotels, since non-essential travel is limited.
Additionally, the Seaside City Council is planning to reconvene in a special meeting on Wednesday, May 20, 2020 at 7 p.m. to discuss the lodging restrictions that have also been in place since March 23. Meeting details for that council meeting will be posted to the city website prior to the meeting and streamed live via Zoom and YouTube Live.