An important update from the City Manager on coronavirus

March 11, 2021

The public health situation is rapidly changing, here are the latest updates affecting city facilities.

City officials strongly urge citizens to conduct their business over the phone and by mail whenever possible.

The City of Oak Ridge is supporting the “Tennessee Pledge” efforts by the state government. Please refer to State of Tennessee websites for updates and advice on precautions to be taken by particular businesses.

City facilities will continue to be operated as below as precautions and security matters are considered for the safety of our employees and “social distancing” for our customers. Visitors may receive a temperature scan and inquiry about current health. Please call the City Manager’s office or department offices on the City’s website for further information.

Note: Financial transactions can be handled electronically and via mail. If you need to meet someone, you can call the department’s extension directly. Phone numbers are listed under each department below.

• The City of Oak Ridge Municipal Building has partially reopened to the public with the following COVID-19 precautions in place:
• Secured, badge-only areas of the Municipal Building are in effect; only City staff can access the majority of City departments.
• Public access to the Municipal Building is restricted to the north entrance near the courtroom (labeled Court Public Safety), the Utility Business Office and Community Development permit window, and the entrance near the City Clerk’s office on the south side of the building, which is for handicap access only. For handicap access, contact the City Clerk’s Office at (865) 425-3411.
• At the Court Public Safety entrance, visitors can check in for their scheduled appointments to be escorted to secured areas of the building.
• Masks are required to enter the building.
• Departmental services are still available electronically or by appointment. This precaution should limit potential exposures to these employees.
• If you need to reach a department, call the number listed below for each department or click here for a list of all departments. You can also reach a department by email or social media.
• The City is limiting the number of face-to-face meetings and conduct electronic meetings as allowed by the Governor’s executive order. An official record of the meetings will be established for review on the City of Oak Ridge website.
• Oak Ridge Mayor Warren Gooch continues to issue Emergency Executive Orders that parallel the Governor’s Executive Orders.

(865) 425-3455

• The Oak Ridge Public Library will begin a phased reopening on March 29.
• The first phase, from March 29 through May 29, will allow patrons to browse the main library and Children’s Room, use public computers, and enjoy the newly renovated library space. Library hours will be limited to Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• Curbside pickup will continue during phase one. Curbside hours, however, will change to Monday through Saturday from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
• The Oak Ridge Room will be open by appointment and all programming will remain virtual. The auditorium will remain closed to the public. Public restrooms will be open, but water fountains will not be available.
• Because COVID-19 is still a concern, everyone visiting the library will be required to wear a mask that covers both the mouth and nose. Temperature checks, health screening, and social distancing measures will be in place. If you are not able to wear a mask, please let us help you either through our curbside service or over the phone at (865) 425-3455.
• If COVID cases continue to decline and access to vaccines becomes widespread, the second phase of reopening will begin June 1, and will let patrons do all of the above as well as access the Oak Ridge Room on Tuesday through Saturday.
• Beginning June 1, library hours will resume a normal summer schedule:
-       Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
-       Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• The library will not offer curbside service after May 29.
• For more information on the phased reopening, visit
• Please keep an eye on our website and Facebook page for updates.

(865) 425-3400

• The lobby to the Utilities Business Office (UBO) has reopened to the public with COVID-19 precautions. A limited number of customers are allowed in the lobby at one time. Masks are required.
• Customers are still encouraged to make payments through the online Customer Self Service portal at, or by phone 24/7 by calling (833) 268-4341 (6-digit account number required). Customers are also welcome to use the overnight drop box located in the parking lot at 200 S. Tulane Avenue or payments can be mailed to P.O. Box 1 Oak Ridge, TN 37831.

(865) 425-1875
• Public Works and Electrical Department services are still ongoing. 
• The Central Services Complex reopened to the public by appointment only.
• Visitors will be buzzed in and escorted to the office they need. All visitors will be temperature-screened before entry and required to wear masks.
• If you need to reach Public Works, please call (865) 425-1875 and for the Electric Department, call (865) 425-1803.

(865) 425-3531

• Community Development offices are generally closed to public access, but services are being provided in person, and electronically when staff is not available at permit desk.
• If you need assistance with permitting or inspections, contact or call (865) 425-3532.
• For planning or general information, call (865) 425-3531 and leave a message.

(865) 425-3520

• All citizen visits and tours to fire stations and headquarters have been suspended.
• Fire administration may be reached via phone at (865) 425-3520.

(865) 425-3504

• The main entrance to the police department is closed to the public. 
• To file police reports, citizens should call the police department for guidance at (865) 425-3504.
• Crime tips can still be reported online.

(865) 425-3536

• Oak Ridge City Court is conducting virtual hearings.
• If you unsure of your court date, please contact the Oak Ridge City Court Clerk’s Office at (865) 425-3536.
• Masks or face coverings must be worn at all times in the Court Clerk’s Office and if occurring, in City Court.
• The City Court Clerk’s office is open for payment from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. or via mail. Citizens are encouraged to handle any transactions via mail to help reduce the chance for spread of the COVID-19 virus. 
• Citizens can send money orders or personal checks to: 

City of Oak Ridge - City Courts
P.O. Box 1
Oak Ridge, TN 37831
• If a payment is past due, only a money order or a cashier’s check is accepted. 
• If you have any questions about what is owed or whether you need to appear in court, please call (865) 425-3536.

(865) 425-3423

• Oak Ridge Animal Shelter is temporarily closed to the public to ensure the safety and health of animals, employees, volunteers and visitors.
• Animal Control will continue to respond to animal emergencies.
• Adoptions and owner reclaims must be scheduled by calling (865) 425-3423.
• Aggressive and loose animals in the city limits will be responded to by Animal Control. Animal Control may be reached during normal business hours, Tuesday through Saturday 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. at (865) 425-3423.  If you have a problem after-hours, you can call the Oak Ridge Police Departments non-emergency number (865) 425-4399.

(865) 425-3999
The Senior Center is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. This limited schedule allows time to clean and disinfect the building between sessions.
Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Tennessee Commission on Aging & Disability, the following safety protocols will be in place:
• Participants and staff are required to wear face masks and follow social distancing standards while in the building.
Upon entry, all participants will be asked COVID-19 screening questions and temperatures will be checked.
Those who have COVID-19 symptoms are not permitted to participate in programs.
• Each participant is required to fill out new information and release forms when they return to the building for the first time
Participants are required to call ahead to schedule activities so that room and building capacity limits can be observed.
• The Recreation Room is available for pool or ping pong in one-hour increments, with a limit of ten players at any one time.
• The exercise room is open to schedule 45-minute sessions.
• Equipment use is limited to one machine per person per session and no more than 3 participants are allowed in the room at a time.
• The Senior Center is also offering a limited number of spots for one-on-one technology assistance to participants.
• This will include help using smartphones, laptops, and other devices as well as guidance on the use of social media and conferencing applications (such as Zoom). 
• Other programs and activities will be phased into the Senior Center schedule as conditions permit.
• Participants are asked to bring bottled water, as water fountains will not be open at this time.
• The ETHRA Senior Nutrition Program Home Delivered Meals (“Meals On Wheels”) will continue.
• The MyRide program is discontinued. Residents may schedule rides for trips within the city with Oak Ridge transit by calling (865) 482-2785 Monday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  Residents can schedule rides outside of the city by calling ETHRA transit services at (800) 232-1565.

(865) 425-3450

• City playgrounds are open with COVID-19 precautions in place. Click here to read more.
• Trails, greenways and parks including tennis courts, and Blankenship Field and Track remain open for walking and jogging use.
The indoor pool is open.
• Click here to view the schedule for various rental groups and open lap times or visit Private pool parties and group/club outings are unavailable at this time.
• COVID-19 protocols are in place and capacity limits will be enforced. Locker rooms are unavailable at this time.
The Recreation Center is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Rooms are available for rent. Activities, like art classes and volleyball clinics, are being added to the schedule. 
• Masks are required in all areas (staff and the public). Patrons’ temperatures will be taken as they enter. Staff will inquire about COVID-19 symptoms/exposure (per current building postings). Areas will be sanitized by staff after each use. Numbers in each area of the buildings will be limited based on safety protocols. Call (865) 425-3450 for specific room limits.
• The Scarboro Center is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
• The restrooms at Melton Lake Park are open and cleaned by Parks Division staff. Adventures Outdoors is closed for the season.

(865) 425-5353

• Water coolers at the Centennial Golf Course remain off the course.
• Restrooms have been winterized and closed for the winter. Clubhouse restrooms remain open and are cleaned daily.
• Ball washers remain off the course but, flags on the putting green have been replaced.
• Golf carts can now be shared, however, if a player has concerns about the virus, they may take their own cart for a small fee. Carts are still being sanitized after each round. 
• Golf cups have been replaced back to normal play.
• The driving range and range machine are open, weather permitting.
• The grille at the golf course club house remains open with a limited menu.
• The beverage cart is running more often to serve our customers in the open environment and encouraging distancing by not having to enter the clubhouse for their food and beverage needs. 

For more information, contact the City Manager’s office at 865-425-3550.