Mayor Ravi S. Bhalla today signed an executive order permitting fitness clubs to utilize certain City fields and parks in order to facilitate safe, socially distanced outdoor workouts. The executive order was signed in anticipation of a reduction in capacity and limitations within certain gymnasiums and fitness centers during a gradual re-opening as determined by Governor Murphy, and difficulties of social distancing in certain indoor locations. The City encourages fitness clubs to utilize outdoor space as much as practically possible for workouts given recommendations from the CDC.
Owners or managers of fitness centers with a license to operate in the City of Hoboken can now apply to host outdoor classes of up to 15 people, with strict social distancing guidelines of at least six feet between each participant at all times.
“Our gyms and fitness clubs have been hard hit during COVID-19,” said Mayor Bhalla. “We recognize the major challenges faced during a gradual re-opening with indoor facilities not always having the room for social distancing or capability to reduce capacity. Allocating space for outdoor classes provides an added option for safe and socially distanced workouts that makes the best possible use of our public space.”
“We think allowing businesses to utilize public space to host outdoor fitness classes is an excellent first step towards re-opening while also promoting public health and wellbeing,” said Patrick Franco, owner of the Hudson Yoga Project. “Addiction, depression, and other mental health issues have all been proven to be reduced with physical activity. Through this initial role out, the Hudson Yoga Project can provide a roadmap of how safe and responsible interactions can be sustained within the fitness community.”
Owners or managers of current Hoboken gyms or fitness clubs may apply to utilize outdoor space in certain city fields and parks by visiting http://www.hobokennj.gov/outdoorfitness. Each application will be reviewed by City staff on a case by case basis, with additional information requested including class sizes, current indoor capacity, types of workouts requested outdoors, and more. Gyms and fitness clubs are permitted to charge participants the fair market value they would normally charge for indoor classes.
Certain activities may be restricted given the requested location of outdoor space, and priority will be given for morning times when fields and parks are not as heavily utilized by the public. The City is offering the following parks and fields are offered for outdoor workouts:
Church Square Park basketball court
Elysian Park basketball court
Multi-Service Center rink
14th Street Viaduct soccer pitch
City Hall Plaza (behind City Hall)
7th and Jackson plaza and lawn
Sinatra Park amphitheater
1600 Turf Field and concrete area
Maxwell Park pier and lawn
Mama Johnson field
Sinatra Park field
Stevens Park little league field
Church Square Park turf lawn
Additionally, the Mayor’s Executive Order permits gymnasiums and fitness clubs to utilize outdoor parking lots for socially distanced workouts with the permission of the respective property owner.
More information about Hoboken’s efforts to help small businesses, including the City’s Business Recovery Plan and applications for streateries, parklets and open streets can be found at http://www.hobokennj.gov/businessrecovery.