NYC to fully reopen by July, Mayor de Blasio says


New York Mayor Bill de Blasio in Times Square after he toured the grand opening of a Broadway COVID-19 vaccination site intended to jump-start the city’s entertainment industry on Monday, April 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

NEW YORK — New York City is set to “fully reopen” by July, Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a surprise announcement Thursday.

After over a year of remote learning, curfews, no or limited indoor dining, and other COVID-19 restrictions, de Blasio made the announcement on Morning Joe, a national morning news talk show, just hours before his daily news briefing with local media.

You can catch updates from the mayor’s daily news briefing here: NY COVID latest: Thursday, April 29, 2021

“Our plan is to fully reopen New York City on July 1,” the mayor said. “We are ready for stores to open, for businesses to open, offices, theaters – full strength.”

De Blasio cited the city’s rising vaccination numbers – 6.3 million total doses given so far, he said – when speaking of the ambitious goal.

“We know the vaccination effort is gonna grow and grow,” he said.

During his Thursday briefing, de Blasio said he set the July 1 goal to have the city fully reopen at 100%, which includes restaurants, bars, stores, fitness centers, arenas, theaters and personal care businesses.

“We’re going to keep working hard every day to make this city safer and safer,” the mayor said. “This is going to be the summer of New York City.”

When asked if fully reopening would include the resumption of 24-hour subway service, the mayor said he has long believed subway service should get back to 24/7 at the right time.

“I think July 1 is the right time,” the mayor added.

De Blasio also said safety measures will be put in place depending on the data, but urged everyone to continue to get vaccinated.

As of Thursday morning, 6,427,404 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered, and the mayor said he remained optimistic the city will achieve its goal in getting 5 million New Yorkers vaccinated.

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