Capacity restrictions in NY to ease as soon as next week
Museums, zoos, movie theaters allowed to have more patrons
New York’s gradual reopening continues: Capacity restrictions will be lifted on a number of arts and entertainment venues beginning next week, offering a sign of hope for the tourism industry.
Starting Monday, museums and zoos can open at 50 percent capacity and movie theaters can expand capacity to 33 percent, with other safety precautions in place.
Movie theaters have been operating at 25 percent capacity, or no more than 50 people per screening. Museums have been subject to 25 percent capacity limitations.
Additional limitations will also be lifted next month. Starting May 19, large indoor arenas will have their maximum capacity raised to 25 percent.
Sports venues were some of the last establishments to reopen to patrons, only receiving the opportunity to do so Feb. 23. Even so, as of now, stadiums can only operate at 10 percent capacity and event-goers must present a negative Covid-19 test within 72 hours of the event’s start, in addition to wearing a mask.
Restaurants have also seen restrictions ease recently. As of this past Monday, the curfew for bars and restaurants in New York City has been pushed from 11 p.m to midnight. Catered events can be hosted until 1 a.m.
Still, restaurants in the city can only operate at 50 percent capacity while those in other parts of the state have returned to 75 percent capacity.
The tourism industry has been hammered by the pandemic, with a recent report from the city’s tourism agency projecting that it would not fully recover until 2025. That’s hurt museums and other venues, which have seen their attendance decline in the past year.