Thursday, September 24, 2020

Lewisville parks to become tobacco-free sites

Photo by Paweł Czerwiński on Unsplash

City parks in Lewisville will become tobacco-free sites in early May as part of a comprehensive overhaul of the Code of Ordinances for administration and operation of the parks and recreation system. The changes were unanimously approved by Lewisville City Council on Monday, April 20.

The use of tobacco or electronic nicotine devices will be prohibited at any city park. Director of Parks and Recreation Stacie Anaya told councilmembers the need to make city parks tobacco-free was primarily a matter of health and safety for visitors, but also would have other benefits related to park maintenance because cigarette butts are the most common piece of litter found in the parks.

“Ensuring park users have a smoke-free park system is an incredible accomplishment for Lewisville,” Anaya said. “Prohibiting the use of tobacco and electronic nicotine devices in our parks system will enhance visitors’ experience as well as help us protect the environment.”

Anaya said going tobacco-free also provides general safety benefits, noting that heavily wooded areas such as Lewisville Lake Environmental Learning Area (LLELA), Central Park, and public trails along greenbelts and creeks can easily catch fire when cigarettes are discarded.

The switch to all parks becoming tobacco-free sites was one significant part of the full overhaul of Chapter 10 of the Code of Ordinances. This was the first substantial review and overhaul of that code in more than 20 years. The update was made because a large portion of that chapter was out of date and no longer applied to the current operations of the department or industry trends and program goals.

Another significant change to Chapter 10 is the reduction of consecutive days campers can stay at the RV campground at Lake Park. The maximum stay at the campground was lowered from 28 days to 14 days. This change brings the city in line with the United States Army Corps of Engineers’ rules and is similar to other campgrounds around Lewisville Lake and the metroplex.

“Reducing the time campers can occupy a site will give more opportunities to new campers to discover Lake Park and all the great things Lewisville has to offer,” Anaya said.

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