Park "spray features" are now open. Credit: Chicago Mayor's Office

CHICAGO — With blazing heat and humidity sweeping the area, Chicagoans can cool down at local parks this week while maintaining precautions to protect against the spread of coronavirus.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced Tuesday cooling centers and splash pads will be open to help fight extreme heat until Friday. Find a park water feature near you here.

Deep cleaning and disinfection protocols have been established for each of the cooling centers. Social distancing with 6 feet between people will be in effect. People must also wear face coverings inside any cooling center. 

“Although an extreme heat warning has not been issued by the National Weather Service at this time, OEMC is dedicated to keeping Chicagoans safe from the dangerous heat conditions and reminds everyone to stay hydrated and seek shade when possible,” OEMC Executive Director Rich Guidice said in a statement.

Six cooling centers are open until Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

  • Englewood Center – 1140 W. 79th Street
  • Garfield Center – 10 S. Kedzie Ave.
  • King Center – 4314 S. Cottage Grove
  • North Area Center – 845 W. Wilson Ave.
  • South Chicago Center – 8650 S. Commercial Ave.
  • Trina Davila Center – 4312 W. North Ave.

In addition to the cooling centers, there are additional senior specific cooling centers which are open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. through Friday, with the exception of Renaissance Court Senior Regional Center which will be open from 9 a.m. To 5 p.m. 

  • Central West Center – 2102 W. Ogden Avenue
  • Northeast (Levy) Senior Center – 2019 W. Lawrence Avenue
  • Northwest (Copernicus) Senior Center – 3160 N. Milwaukee Avenue
  • Renaissance Court – 78 E. Washington Street
  • Southeast (Atlas) Senior Center – 1767 E. 79th Street
  • Southwest Center – 6117 S. Kedzie Avenue

The city is also making available more than 75 public libraries, 30 park district field houses and 50 CTA Cooling Buses for residents to use all of which can be found here.

City official urge neighbors to check on their friends and loved ones over the next few days and call 311 for information about the city’s cooling centers.

Additionally, residents should be vigilant about signs of a heatstroke which include:

  • An extremely high body temperature, such as 103 degrees or above
  • Dizziness and nausea
  • A throbbing headache and a pulse that is rapid and strong
  • Skin that is red, hot and dry

Residents should call 911 if they spot someone showing symptoms of heat stroke, which can be fatal. You also should move that person into a cool area and cool them with water.

Block Club Chicago’s coronavirus coverage is free for all readers. Block Club is an independent, 501(c)(3), journalist-run newsroom.

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