New York City will “fully reopen” on July 1, according to an announcement made by Mayor Bill de Blasio.
COVID-19 restrictions have been in place in New York City for more than a year. The city was initially an epicenter of the coronavirus, reporting upward of 800 COVID-related deaths per day in April 2020. The daily death toll has dropped significantly since those early dark days, as vaccinations ramp up across the city and the country at large.
New York City is America’s most populous city, with 18,823,000 metro area residents. Speaking with MSNBC’s Morning Joe, de Blasio said there will be no restrictions on businesses following the July 1 reopening.
“We now have the confidence that we can pull all of these pieces together and get life back, really, in many ways, to where it was,” he said. “We said a month or so ago, it was the variants vs. the vaccination, what was going to win, which one was going to win the race. Vaccination is winning this race … 6.3 million vaccinations, COVID is plummeting.”
De Blasio has not yet clarified if any additional safety measures, like proof of a COVID vaccination—or “vaccine passports”— will be implemented following the reopening. He has stressed the need for New Yorkers to be “smart” as they resume normal activities, and he urged unvaccinated residents to get an appointment.
“Help us out by going out and getting vaccinated if you haven’t already, and it’s free and it’s all over the city and now we’re doing walkups at sites all over the city,” he said. “We’ve got some work to do but I’m quite confident we’ll be ready for full strength by July 1.”
By the time New York City reopens, many of the summer’s large public events will have already passed. But the ability to visit Broadway, which intends to reopen its doors in September, and visit local museums, barbershops, and restaurants are still a big draw for residents and tourists.
“This is going to be the summer of New York City” de Blasio said. “You’re going to see amazing activities, cultural activities coming back. I think people are going to flock to New York City, because they want to live again.”
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