IDAHO FALLS – Parks in Idaho Falls are now closed between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. to promote public safety, reduce vandalism and ensure a better quality of life for residents.
The Idaho Falls City Council amended the city’s parks ordinance to establish the curfew for parks spaces and cemeteries during Thursday night’s City Council meeting. The ordinance also sets a two-hour time limit on unreserved park shelters and amenities currently utilized on a first-come-first-served basis.
“This will help us have a safer parks system throughout our community,” said Parks and Recreation Director PJ Holm. “Over the years, our staff has had to keep up with vandalism and other issues that often occur during night hours.”
Under the ordinance, it is a misdemeanor for anyone to be present in a public park, park amenity or cemetery when closed to the public unless they meet some exceptions. Driving a vehicle on an interior public park roadway that provides direct access to the person’s residence and actively traveling on a designated bicycle and pedestrian pathway are allowed when parks are closed. People can also attend an authorized, permitted event during the hours parks are closed.
As part of the parks shelter section of the new ordinance, users cannot occupy the shelter for more than their approved reservation period if space is reserved. When a public shelter or other amenity is not reserved, people or any group cannot occupy the area longer than two consecutive hours.
“In the past, some people or groups have utilized shelters for long periods, not allowing the community to enjoy these spaces. This gives everyone the equability to access a park shelter in-between reservations and rentals,” Holm said.
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Media Note: For more information, please contact City of Idaho Falls Public Information Officer Eric Grossarth at (208) 612-8562 or [email protected].