EDMONTON -- A week after Alberta’s chief medical officer of health announced voluntary health restrictions to help combat rising coronavirus cases in the Edmonton region, the city has introduced some new measures to help stop the spread.

“We continue to be concerned by the continuing increase in case numbers. We need all Edmontonians to adhere to the health precautions and practise them daily to prevent COVID-19 case numbers from increasing any further,” said Interim City Manager Adam Laughlin. “As the COVID-19 pandemic wears on, we will not let it wear down our resolve to protect our city, including our most vulnerable community members.”

The city’s response includes making changes to transit and recreation facilities.

Going forward, the city will implement same-day cleaning and disinfecting of bus shelters near local schools after being informed of a school outbreak.

There will also be adjustments to Edmonton transit service levels, including school service, to support physical distancing restrictions.

Customers buying low income transit passes will also see changes to the way the passes are sold to reduce the need for in-person contact.

Recreation centres and city facilities will see a number of changes. No new bookings for social events will be allowed for the remainder of the year, and capacity for other indoor bookings like meetings has been reduced to 25 per cent of a room’s normal capacity, to a maximum of 50 people.

Spectators will no longer be allowed in rec centre areas without designated seating areas, and facilities with seating areas will be reduced to 25 per cent of regular capacity, up to 50 spectators.

The city will also have increased security at rec centres to ensure that safety protocols are being followed.

The city is also working to ensure that temporary accommodation at the Edmonton Convention Centre will open by Oct. 30 to provide a safe, warm place for Edmontonians experiencing homelessness.

As of Thursday, there were 1,497 active cases of COVID-19 in the Edmonton zone.

For more information about the new measures, you can visit the city’s website.