The return of indoor dining at New York City restaurants and bars will be delayed.
Eateries had been preparing to serve diners indoors ‒ with limited capacity ‒ under Phase 3 of the reopening, which is slated to begin on Mon., July 6.
However, Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Tuesday that indoor dining has been postponed indefinitely, citing the spike in coronavirus cases occurring in many states that had already reopened.
“We see a lot of problems, particularly around people going to bars and restaurants indoors. The science is showing it more and more. We cannot go ahead with indoor dining in New York City,” he said.
De Blasio said the city would focus on helping more restaurants with outdoor dining by bolstering the Open Restaurants program, which has included more than 6,600 eateries so far.
He said the city planned “a huge outreach effort” that involved city agencies going out into communities, helping to show restaurants that qualify that that they can take advantage of this right away, get a lot more business and do it in a safe way, which is outdoors,” he said.