New York Reopening Update: Most Capacity Restrictions Will Be Lifted by May 19
Governor Cuomo announced that most business capacity restrictions, which are based on percentage of maximum occupancy, will be lifted on May 19th. Businesses will only be limited by the space available to maintain the required 6 feet social distancing. This new distance-based maximum capacity will apply across commercial settings, including retail, restaurants, gyms and fitness centers, hair salons and barber shops, offices, etc.
The commercial and social event capacity restrictions for outdoor and indoor events are no longer effective if all attendees over the age of 4 can present ither proof of full vaccination status or recent negative COVID-19 test result and the required social distancing can be accommodated.
Previously, Governor Cuomo announced that capacity will increase throughout several industries. Effective May 15th, gyms and fitness centers can increase capacity from 33% to 50%. Office buildings can increase their capacity from 50% to 75% statewide. Effective May 7th, New York City indoor dining can expand to 75% capacity and hair salons, barber shops and other personal care services can expand to 75% statewide.
Additionally, indoor and outdoor social gathering limits will increase in May. The outdoor social gathering limit will increase from 200 to 500 people beginning May 10th and the indoor social gathering limit will increase from 100 to 250 people beginning May 19th. The outdoor residential gathering limit of 25 people will be removed and the indoor residential gathering limit will increase from 10 to 50 people.
All social distancing, masks, health screenings, and other COVID-related health and safety protocols remain in effect. For additional information on industry-specific guidance and reopening protocols, visit https://forward.ny.gov/.