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Gov. Abbott Directs All State Parks And Historic Sites To Close To Public

By Carlos Morales

In response to the coronavirus, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is calling for all Texas parks and historic sites to temporarily close to the public, beginning Tuesday evening at 5 p.m.

The temporary closure will affect all of the nearly 100 parks and historic sites across the state.

In a statement today, Gov. Abbott says closing Texas parks and historic sites are part of the state’s efforts to “strengthen social distancing practices and prevent gatherings of large groups of people.” 

In March, as the coronavirus became a growing concern for Texans, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department says state parks saw 740,000 visitors. 

"Given the myriad of challenges and heightened risks of operating the parks at this time, we believe this is the best course of action right now in order to meet the health and safety expectations the state has set out for the citizens of Texas,” said Carter Smith, executive director of TPWD.

During the closure, park employees will continue to work to "help maintain the standard upkeep, maintenance, stewardship, and continued regular cleaning of site facilities," according to a press release from TPWD.

Parks and historic sites will reopen at the Governor’s direction.

Carlos Morales is Marfa Public Radio's News Director.