Last week we learned that Chicago would allow indoor seating at restaurants and bars to reopen with limited capacity on Friday, June 26, following Illinois into Phase 4 of the state's reopening plan, which is set to begin on the same day. Today, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced that Chicago will officially move into Phase 4 of the city's reopening plan on June 26, allowing some of the city's top attractions to welcome back guests.
According to a press release, the following businesses will be able to reopen on June 26:
- Indoor seating in bars and restaurants
- Museums and zoos
- Performance venues
- Summer camps and youth activities
As previously announced, indoor seating at bars and restaurants will be restricted to 25 percent capacity with a maximum of 50 people per floor. Likewise, capacity at museums will be limited to 50 people per room, with staggered entry and exit from the building to prevent crowding. Performance venues will be able to host plays, concerts and other performances with staggered seating to separate groups of individuals and a capacity limit of 50 people per room or floor (the guidelines mention that up to 50 people could occupy each balcony in a venue). Movie theaters will also be able to resume screenings, with decommissioned rows of seating and a limit of 50 people per theater.
As of June 26, indoor gatherings of 50 or fewer people and outdoor gatherings of 100 or fewer people will be allowed, increasing the ability to host events on a smaller scale throughout the summer. Just don't expect the return of large-scale gatherings anytime soon—during a press conference, Mayor Lightfoot stated that spectator sports (such as baseball and basketball) will remain closed to audiences and conventions will not be allowed.
Lightfoot also explained that Phase 4 will not be static, allowing for other industries, businesses and activities to resume as the city's metrics improve. Could that mean beaches reopening in some capacity at some point this summer? Only time will tell.
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