Boston shuts down construction sites amid coronavirus fears

City’s mayor says he will revisit the ban in two weeks

Construction workers ending their work day on March 16 (Credit: David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
Construction workers ending their work day on March 16 (Credit: David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

Boston has shut down all of its construction projects in the city, raising questions about whether other cities such as New York could follow its lead.

Boston Mayor Martin Walsh ordered all of the city’s construction projects to shut down on Monday, according to the Boston Globe. He said the only work he anticipates happening in the city moving forward will be emergency work, such as utility hookups and street repairs. The move will impact tens of thousands of workers.

The shutdown will be effective as of Tuesday. Walsh said skeleton crews could remain on the sites to make sure they are safe and that he plans to revisit and potentially lift the ban in two weeks.

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Boston has faced several of the same restrictions as New York since coronavirus cases began spreading, including the closure of library branches and schools and strict limits on the amount of people who can come together at a public gathering.

New York’s Department of Buildings did notify active construction sites this weekend to follow the latest guidance from the city’s Department of Health on the spread of the coronavirus, but it has not shut down the industry.

“We will continue to closely monitor the situation,” DOB spokesman Andrew Rudansky said in a statement, “and will issue further guidance to the industry as needed.” [Boston Globe] — Eddie Small