ATLANTA — The YMCA is open for business. Several locations across the metro area reopened their doors to the public on Friday.
For the seven YMCA locations across metro Atlanta that are opening, today is considered Phase One - and the YMCA is taking it gradually.
YMCA of Metro Atlanta President and CEO Lauren Koontz spoke to 11Alive's Nick Sturdivant, and said the plan to reopen was well thought out.
At first, the facilities are only operating at 25 percent capacity and limiting people to an hour inside them.
"We're really at those seven locations only opening the wellness floor, of the work that we do," Koontz said. "And again that's important because we kind of want to breathe through that. Let's take three days to get used to that."
Koontz added the goal was to at least give members some access to their YMCA.
"Now there's a lot of mental health and physical benefits to getting back to a wellness routine," she said. "We're really trying to have a thoughtful and strategic approach in talking to our communities to understand what do they really need right now."
Phase One is in line with the CDC and Georgia Department of Public Health protocols, which include regular temperature checks, designating different access points, constant cleaning and disinfecting, social distancing and even spacing out fitness equipment.
People are also required to wear masks as the staff helps them navigate through the facilities.
The locations now open are:
- Carl E. Sanders YMCA (Buckhead)
- Northwest Family YMCA (Kennesaw)
- East Lake Family YMCA
- Northeast Cobb Family YMCA (Marietta)
- Robert D. Fowler Family YMCA (Peachtree Corners)
- Summit Family Fayette Outdoor YMCA
- Covington Family YMCA
Koontz said staff continues to go through hours of training to get up to speed with the protocols.
They're look to open up more locations in the coming weeks.