Coronavirus (COVID-19) response

On this page

  1. News updates
  2. Closures and re-openings
  3. Visiting city hall and the service centre
  4. Service changes
  5. Enforcement
  6. Community support
  7. Business support
  8. Arts and culture support

Last updated: Thursday July 2 at 12:00 p.m. 

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News updates

Visit our news page for previous updates.

Closures and re-openings

Currently open:

All park activities must follow distancing and gathering size requirements.

Re-opening soon to the public:

  • cricket fields (July 4)
  • day camps (July 6)
  • new splash pad in Waterloo Park (late July)

Re-opening soon for registered day camps:

  • Waterloo Memorial Recreation Complex (July 6)
  • RIM Park (July 6)
  • Albert McCormick Community Centre (July 6)
  • Moses Springer Community Centre (July 6)

These facilities are open for day camps run by the city and affiliated organizations. They are not open to the general public.

Closed indefinitely or cancelled:

  • Bechtel Park Manulife Soccer and Sports Centre (indoor facility only)
  • indoor recreation facilities
  • in-person city events
  • in-person committee meetings
  • playgrounds

Visiting city hall and the service centre

Safety measures are in place if you visit city hall or the service centre. Both facilities are open regular business hours.

Following regional public health advice, masks are not required but recommended if you are unable to maintain physical distancing from others.

City hall services available for walk-in

  • Municipal enforcement counter (parking tickets, licences)
  • Revenue counter (paying bills)

City hall services that require appointments

  • Planning
  • Building Services
  • Legislative Services
  • Community Services
  • Mayor and CAO's office

Call 519-886-1550 to book an appointment to visit one of these departments.

City hall entrance procedure

Anyone who is unwell, has a temperature, left Canada over the last 14 days or exposed to a person who has tested positive for COVID-19 is asked to not come to a city building.

  • a member of our team will greet visitors upon their arrival
  • visitors are asked to line-up
  • the number of people permitted to enter will be controlled
  • visitors doing business with the city will be asked to line up along windows on William street side of building (Finance wing)
  • visitors doing business with a city hall tenant will be asked to line up along windows on Regina side of building (vacant suite)
  • visitors with pre-scheduled appointments will queued at the appropriate customer service counter
  • center area of the building is reserved for people to exit
  • visitors are welcome to use the first floor washrooms  
  • signage and physical distancing markers will be posted 

City hall capacity

To maintain physical distancing queuing and capacity numbers have been established for each customer service counter:

  • Elevator – 1
  • Revenue – 5
  • Community Services – 1
  • Human Resources – 1
  • Municipal Enforcement – 2
  • Integrated Planning & Public Works – 2
  • Legislative Services – 1 person at counter, 1 waiting in hallway
  • Wedding ceremonies – 9 maximum in Council Chambers
  • CAO/Elected Officials – 1
  • Tenants vary by business, will permit 1 or 2, staff will escort the visitor to desired business

Service centre entrance procedure

Anyone who is unwell, has a temperature, left Canada over the last 14 days or exposed to a person who has tested positive for COVID-19 is asked to not come to a city building.

  • People attending the Service Centre will be required to use the intercom system to notify city staff that they have arrived
  • Bill payments will be accepted at this location

Changes to City of Waterloo services

Water flushing in your building

Read water flushing guidelines to make sure your building has clean water supply.

Customer service open to calls

Customer service staff will continue to answer phone calls. Please report urgent issues only.

City council meetings online only

Council meetings are fully online. The public can stream meetings live and watch recordings. Feedback can be sent to the city clerk via email.

For times, agenda and streaming links, visit the council calendar.

Senior support programs still operating

Our grocery shopping and telephone reassurance programs continue to operate. These programs are designed for people 65 and up but other people with special needs may qualify.

To inquire, call 519-579-6930 from Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Parking time limits not enforced

Bylaw officers will not enforce overnight parking regulations or on-street time limits. Safety issues such as parking on fire routes will still be enforced

Parking permit fees reduced for July, August and September

Monthly pass holders for uptown parking lots to be charged a reduced fee:

  • 75% reduction for the month of July, paying 25% of the normal fee
  • 50% reduction for the month of August, paying 50% of the normal fee
  • 25% education of the month September, paying 75% of the normal fee

Late payment fees not charged for payments due in April, May and June

Late payment fees will not be charged for property taxes, water and all other accounts receivable. Non-sufficient funds fees will not be charged for cheques that do not clear.

Bills will continue to be issued during this time, but payments can be deferred to July 1 without penalty. Regular interest charges will resume at that time.

No application form is needed. Late fees will be withheld automatically for payments that are not made.

Contact or 519-747-8718 to cancel a pre-authorized payment or a post-dated cheque already in our possession.

Collection of accounts in arrears will be stopped during this period.

Uptown patio application fees not charged

The Uptown Sidewalk Patio application fee is waived for 2020.

Building permit approval and inspections are limited

Call 519-886-1550 to book an appointment. Permit applications, issuance and inspections are affected.

For full details, visit our building information.

Marriage licences by appointment only

Starting July 15 you will not need an appointment to obtain a marriage licence. If you require a marriage licence before July 15 email

In-person counter service at city hall is open by appointment only. Call 519-886-1550

For details, visit our marriage and oaths.

Burial permits by phone only

Call 519-747-8777 for service.

Freedom of information (FOI) requests by mail or drop off only

In-person counter at city hall is closed. We will continue to accept requests via mail or drop off.

For details, visit our FOI page.

Development application inquiries by email only
In-person counter at city hall is available by appointment only. Call 519-886-1550 to book an appointment.

For details, visit zone changes.

Street sweeping delayed

During the current shutdown, street sweeping will still be maintained, however the service will be delayed.

Residents can assist by removing materials covering catch basins in front of their home (using gloves) and placing it out with their yard waste collection.

Property assessments on hold

The Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) has postponed the 2020 Assessment Update.



We have processed refunds for cancelled programs and bookings that were scheduled to take place from April 6 to June 30.

Visit our refunds page for full details.

Community support

For a list of local community supports, visit the Region of Waterloo's community support webpage. This includes food delivery, and public spaces open for warming or washroom use.

Waterloo at Home

City staff and community partners have come together to create Waterloo At Home - a curation of helpful tips and resources for residents to make the best of their time at home. 

Using Engage Waterloo as the platform, Waterloo At Home is a one-stop-shop for ideas, resources and stories aimed at keeping residents active, connected and creative at home. 

City of Waterloo neighbourhood newsletter

We're all neighbours. Now more than ever, sharing information and having points of connection is important.

We publish a weekly email newsletter with information to help you stay informed and socially connected while physically distancing.


Past editions:

To contact the neighbourhoods team during this time, email

Business support

Our economic development office is working with regional partners to monitor and assess developments related to COVID-19 and their impact on businesses in the City of Waterloo.

We have put together a series of resources to help during this time. For questions or additions/changes to the list, please contact or follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn.

The Waterloo Region Small Business Centre and Uptown Business Improvement Area also have helpful resources for local businesses.

Restaurant, cafes and food shops in Waterloo open during COVID-19

If you're looking for restaurants, cafes or food shops to service you during the temporary closures in Waterloo, this list has everything that is open.

If you are a food service business and would like to be added to this list, please apply below.

Apply to be on map

Retail businesses open during COVID-19

If you're looking for clothing and accessory stores, health and personal care, sporting goods and hobbies, electronics, gardening supplies or general merchandise to service you during the temporary closures in Waterloo, this list has everything that is open.

View the full retail map

If you are a retail service business and would like to be added to this list, please apply below.

Apply to be on map

Resources for re-opening your business
Local businesses helping businesses
  • Shopify: get a retail business online quickly with a three-month trial
  • Vidyard: free video messaging conferencing tools
  • Accelerator Centre: free mentoring workshops across Canada
  • Blackberry: secure connectivity tools free to businesses for 60 days
Call for suppliers to help during COVID-19
Government of Canada resources and programs

As programs are changing regularly, please check Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan for the most up to date information.

Helping business avoid layoffs and rehiring
Helping businesses access credit
Other business programs

The federal government is working with Canadian lenders to make credit available. The six largest financial institutions have made a commitment to work with personal and small business customers on a case-by-case basis to provide flexible solutions.

Contact your current lending institution for details.

Province of Ontario
Other organizations offering support

Arts and culture support

The city's arts and culture team has put together a series of resources to help during this time.

For further updates, follow us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

Advocacy groups with resources
Grants and financial support
Learning resources