As of 11.59pm, 5 October, Tāmaki Makaurau is at Step 1 of the new Alert Level 3 settings - the first phase of a three-part plan by the Government to ease COVID-19 restrictions across the region.
Mayor Phil Goff encourages Aucklanders to enjoy the eased restrictions, but to do so safely.
“Being able to meet friends or family is something many Aucklanders have really been looking forward to, but remember it needs to be outside where there is much less chance of contagion,” he says.
“Please remember that COVID-19 is still in the community and keep your activities within the new rules.
“If you are meeting people, make sure it’s not inside buildings, and in groups of no more than 10 people from a maximum of two households. Continue to wear a mask, maintain social distancing and track your movements with the NZ COVID Tracer app.
“Anyone who has not been vaccinated please do so as soon as possible. This is the best way we can keep ourselves, our families and our communities safe from COVID-19 and will help us move towards a lower level of restrictions.”
Alert Level 3 Step 1
Step 1 sees three key changes to the existing Alert Level 3 restrictions:
- You can meet with another household outdoors - gatherings between 2 households can go ahead, with a maximum of 10 people attending
- You can travel across the region for recreational purposes
- Early learning centres can reopen as long as children are kept in bubbles of 10.
Face coverings continue to be mandatory in some places and strongly encouraged when in public and physical distancing is not possible.
Auckland Council facilities at Step 1
Auckland Council General Manager Community Facilities Taryn Crewe says more services will be available to help Aucklanders make the most of these changes but that it’s down to each of us to keep ourselves and our whānau safe.
“As more Aucklanders head to our parks and open spaces to catch up with their friends and whānau, we know that there will be an increased demand on our services.
“Over the coming days, we will be working to reopen more of our public toilets and making some of our outdoor facilities available for use once again. With so many parks, this will take time so please do bear with us while we work through this.
“Playgrounds, skateparks and basketball courts will reopen but we ask that people exercise common sense when out and about.
“The government guidance is clear on this point: you should only mingle with one other household. If you can’t practice physical distancing around our playgrounds and other facilities, please don’t use them.”
Auckland Council’s libraries, community venues, pools and leisure centres remain closed.
What is and isn’t available at Step 1
- Early learning centres – The council’s early childhood education centres are open as required to care for enrolled tamariki (children). Kauri Kids parents, caregivers and whānau are advised to check Story Park for the latest updates.
- Public toilets – we will be opening additonal public toilets in places where people are most likely to gather, over the coming days. A full list of public toilets open at Alert Level 3 Step 1 can be found on OurAuckland and will be updated daily.
- Regional parks – regional parks will be open during regular seasonal hours.
- Alcohol bans – there are liquor bans in place at some of our beaches and parks. You can find details of where and when the bans apply on our website. These bans still apply under Step 1 and Police will continue to enforce them. Check before you pack your picnic please.
- Picnic tables– picnic tables in our parks and open spaces are available for use, with physical distancing in place.
- Dog walking – consider walking your dog on a leash so you can keep a safe distance from others. We encourage dog owners to check the rules before you set out as some parks don’t permit dogs and others have strict on-leash rules.
- Playgrounds, pump tracks and skate parks – playgrounds, outdoor exercise equipment, pump and bike tracks, and skate parks will reopen. We will start to remove tape and fencing, and reinstall basketball hoops in the coming days.
- Boating – boat ramps will reopen and boating is permitted with restrictions. If your boat has an enclosed space, only 1 household or bubble can go boating. If it does not have an enclosed space, 2 households or a maximum of 10 people can participate.
- Waiheke and Great Barrier Islands - you can only travel to Waiheke or Aotea Great Barrier Island if you are a resident on either of the islands.
- QR codes - QR codes are already in place at our public toilets. Over the coming days we will be putting QR codes on our play spaces, such as playgrounds, skate parks etc. Please continue to input manual entries on the NZ COVID Tracer app while we get these in place.
- Outdoor showers – showers will be turned back on
- Drinking fountains – drinking fountains will remain switched off.
- Cemeteries – gates at our three main cemeteries, Waikumete, North Shore Memorial Park and Manukau Memorial Gardens, will remain closed so we can continue to manage the number of attendees as per the government guidelines.
For a full list of the services that are available, and those that are not, during Alert Level 3 Step 1, please visit the Auckland Council website.
Further detail about sport and recreation at Alert Level 3 is available on the Unite Against COVID-19 website.