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Here's what New York's phased reopening will look like

Collier Sutter
Written by
Collier Sutter

At a press conference earlier this week, Governor Cuomo spoke about a possible plan to reopen New York in detail for the first time. 

Cuomo says he'll likely allow his "Pause" order to expire after May 15 in some sectors of the state, such as the upstate region, but the governor did not yet mention lifting the "Pause" restrictions on the New York City area.

He did, however, sketch out a rough road map for how that goal might be achieved in the future. And the process would largely happen in waves. 

Phase one of reopening and restarting the economy will involve the resumption of construction and manufacturing activities, as those businesses have a greater ability to social distance. Entertainment and retail businesses will be more complicated to reopen, because they tend to draw crowds.

Only after at least two weeks of a steadily declining hospitalization rate, would New York be able to move onto the next step. "Phase two would then be more of a business-by-business analysis," said the governor. That determination would be based on "how essential a service does that business provide, and how risky is that business," said Cuomo. 

"[Businesses] have to think about how they’re going to reopen with this quote-unquote new normal," he said. Every business must have a plan in place when opening that protects employees in the work place and consumers if applicable, to lower the risk with social distancing. 

"How do you incorporate social distancing or fewer people into a space to reduce density?" the governor asked. "How are you going to monitor? Are you taking temperatures of everyone who walks in? That's for businesses to decide."

Cuomo created a New York Forward Re-Opening Advisory Board made up of business, academic, community and civic leaders from across the state to help navigate the coming process and ensure businesses are to follow necessary guidelines.  
Across New York, beaches and attractions will only reopen when it's considered safe, said Cuomo, adding that there should be no events or attractions that would draw people from more infected regions like New York City to less infected areas, such as the Adirondacks. "We can't open an attraction that might bring many people from outside the region and then overwhelm people in that region," Cuomo said.
New Yorkers are already bracing for a summer without usual summer activities, especially since Mayor De Blasio announced this month that all outdoor public pools would be closed in New York City. The governor did suggest the idea that professional sports leagues might be able to still play ball, just without a crowd. He said he has already been entertaining the idea with team owners.

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