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Fort Lauderdale mayor gives green light for commercial gyms to open Monday

Some officials say mayor going against Broward County, but mayor cites governor’s orders

Workout equipment will be spaced out or closed in order to provide at least 6 feet separation between people.
Workout equipment will be spaced out or closed in order to provide at least 6 feet separation between people. (Copyright 2020 by KSAT - All rights reserved.)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Fort Lauderdale will join the rest of the Florida, except for Miami-Dade County and other parts of Broward County, in allowing commercial gyms to reopen Monday morning. Fitness classes can also resume Monday in Fort Lauderdale with restrictions, according to Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis.

However, Broward County has an executive order that only allows private gyms in multifamily complexes to open. It isn’t sure where this might end up, but Trantalis said: "Over the weekend, the city expanded the list of businesses that may open. Acting in accordance with an executive order signed Friday by Gov. DeSantis, we are allowing commercial gyms to resume operations in addition to the partial opening of restaurants, retail stores and salons.

There will be restrictions in place.

  • Gyms cannot exceed 50 percent of their capacity. Employees will be required to wear face masks and have health checks before they start work each day.
  • Patrons will have their temperature checked upon entry and denied access if they have a fever.
  • Machines and equipment stations will spaced six feet apart and sanitized after each use.
  • Showers will be closed.
  • Hand sanitizer must be provided at all entrances, and all patrons and employees must sanitize upon entrance.
  • In addition, fitness classes must maintain the six-foot distancing requirement between participants.

Trantalis said the city has met the public health measurements to move into Phase 1 of reopening with infection rates declining.

“We went from a high of 13% of test results being positive during the week of April 11 to under 4% each of the past two weeks. Testing is now widely available, and our hospitals are again operating normally.”

So far, other cities in Broward County are restricting gym openings to multi-family developments, such as apartment complexes, condominiums and HOAs, as announced Friday when Florida’s governor said gyms would be reopening around the state.

There is disagreement about Trantalis’s executive order to open gyms; Broward County had issued an emergency order that said gyms in the county could not open.

Miami-Dade County is not allowing any gyms to open yet.

“The problem with gyms, there are multiple touch points and it is very difficult to control that,” Gimenez said Friday.


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