New York City indoor dining capacity to increase to 75% in May

Eataly NYC Downtown reopens with Color Factory for La Pizza & La Pasta, a Colori art installation created by artist Eric Rieger (AKA HOTTEA) in New York City on April 21, 2021.

Noam Galai | Getty Images

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Friday that indoor restaurant capacity in New York City will increase to 75% on May 7, which will eventually meet indoor restaurant capacity regulations in the rest of the state.

“After a long and incredibly difficult battle, New York State is winning the war on Covid-19. That means it is time to relax some restrictions put in place to protect public health and support our local businesses.” said the governor.

The announcement comes a day after New York Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that the city would reopen fully by July 1 after more than a year of restrictions. Cuomo said he thinks the city could reopen sooner.

Restaurants aren’t the only companies getting capacity expansion. Fitness centers and personal care services will also open their doors to a higher flow of customers.

New York City gyms and fitness centers will expand to 50 percent capacity starting May 15, while hair salons, nail salons, barbershops, and other personal care services will expand to 75 percent capacity starting May 7th.

The governor announced on Wednesday that bar seating restrictions would be lifted on May 3rd. The outdoor dining curfew at 12 noon will end on May 17, and the indoor dining curfew will expire on May 31st.

The capacity of casinos and gaming facilities will be increased from 25% to 50% and that of offices from 50% to 75%.

“We need to reopen and rebuild our economy as data and science improve in our favor. These new announcements will help New Yorkers bounce back after an incredibly difficult year,” said Lisa Sorin, president the Bronx Chamber of Commerce, in a press release.

Due to severe bar and restaurant restrictions that began in March last year, the city suffered from widespread unemployment. As of July 2020, more than 1,200 restaurants closed their doors permanently, according to the New York Comptroller.

The announcements come as the city has a seven-day average of 1,480 new cases. Nearly 6.5 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines have been administered in the city, with 30% of city residents fully vaccinated, according to the city’s health department.

Correction: This article has been updated to clarify that 30% of New York residents have been fully vaccinated, according to the city’s Department of Health.

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