Most coronavirus capacity restrictions on activities including retail stores, food services, and gyms will end on May 19 in the tri-state area of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said on Monday.
Cuomo said mitigation measures such as keeping six feet apart will remain in place, as per guidance from the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, except in situations where there is proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test.
“This is a major reopening of economic and social activity,” Cuomo said. The governor also announced that the New York City subway will resume its 24-hour service beginning on May 17.
Previously, Cuomo had said that offices could increase to 75 percent capacity, and casinos, gyms, and fitness centers to 50 percent on May 15. Large stadiums will still only move from 25 to 33 percent capacity on May 19. Indoor arenas, such as Nassau Coliseum, will move from 10 to 25 percent capacity on May 19.
The reopening announcement is the latest of many recently, including that New York is lifting its midnight food and beverage service curfew on May 17 for outdoor dining and May 31 for indoor dining.
The lifting of capacity restrictions comes as the number of people receiving the Covid-19 vaccine is increasing, while the Covid-19 infection rate is decreasing across the state. Long Island’s Covid-19 positivity rate is 1.79 percent, the governor said.
(Reporting by Maria Caspani, Editing by Franklin Paul and Chizu Nomiyama)
-With Briana Bonfiglio
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