Coronavirus Restrictions Being Eased In Chicago: Bars Can Serve Inside Again, Restaurants Can Be 40 Percent

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CHICAGO — Mayor Lori Lightfoot is easing coronavirus restrictions on bars and restaurants, saying the city has made sufficient progress in fighting the pandemic.

Bars can reopen for indoor service starting Thursday, Oct. 1, the mayor announced Monday. Restaurants can allow up to 40 percent capacity, up from 25 percent. Both can serve customers until 1 a.m.

“Over the past six months, we have asked so much of our business community. But each time, our businesses have stepped up to the plate,” Lightfoot said in a statement.

“Thanks to this cooperation, we have met this challenging moment with grace, commitment and resilience, and the sacrifices made by our businesses, workers and residents have saved countless lives. This next step in our reopening is good news for business owners as well as the communities they serve and the thousands of residents that work for them.”

Starting Thursday at 5:00 a.m., the new restrictions will be as follows:

• Restaurants, health and fitness centers, personal services, non-essential retail can operate at 40 percent indoor capacity, up from 25 percent. These establishments, restaurants and venues still are limited to 50 total customers within one room or space. The limit of no more than six people at a table also remains in place.

• Breweries, taverns, bars and other establishments that serve alcohol without a food license may reopen with indoor seating, at 25 percent capacity or 50 people, whichever is fewer. Service remains limited to no more than two hours per party, and customers must be seated when eating, drinking or ordering. Patrons cannot walk up to the bar to order.

• Bars, restaurants and other establishments that serve alcohol will now be able to sell alcohol for on-site or off- site consumption until 1:00 am and may remain open until 1:30 am. Liquor stores, grocery stores and other establishments that sell alcohol to-go through a Packaged Goods license must continue to cease alcohol sales at 9:00 p.m.

• Maximum group size for health and fitness classes and after-school programming can increase from 10 to 15 people.

• Facials, shaves and other personal services that require the removal of face coverings will be allowed.

More information about the new guidelines can be found here.

This is a developing story.

Block Club Chicago’s coronavirus coverage is free for all readers. Block Club is an independent, 501(c)(3), journalist-run newsroom.

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via Block Club Chicago

September 28, 2020 at 01:33PM

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