Occidental College Campus Closed sign

Eagle Rock -- Occidental College has closed the campus to visitors after too many persons failed to follow social distancing guidelines and wear masks, college officials said.

The campus grounds that had long been open to the public were officially closed off on April 28 when "Campus Closed" signs appeared at entrances to the school, which sits in the middle of a residential neighborhood.

"Oxy continued to welcome visitors after the city issued its March 19 'safe at home order,' but began receiving multiple complaints from students, staff, faculty and even neighbors about visitors who failed to observe social distancing guidelines," said college spokesman Jim Tranquada in a statement.

One neighbor even called the County Department of Public Health to complain.

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"We worked hard to persuade visitors to follow public health orders on wearing masks, observing proper social distancing and not gathering in groups while visiting campus," said Tranquada. "However, because of a continuing lack of compliance we reluctantly closed the campus to all visitors."

The student-run news site, The Occidental, noted that members of an Eagle Rock Facebook group were not happy about the closure but a college employee who was interviewed welcomed the new policy, which made her feel safer.

It's not known when the campus will reopen to the public. 

Meanwhile, Occidental has opened two of its dorms to house health-care workers from Glendale Adventist Medical Center in Glendale and Huntington Hospital in Pasadena.

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