New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says all non-essential businesses, public and private schools will close Wednesday in nine zip codes in Brooklyn and Queens, if approved by the state, after reporting coronavirus cases above a 3 percent positivity rate for at least seven consecutive days.
Indoor dining will also be suspended in an additional 11 zip codes in Brooklyn and Queens which have seen spikes in cases, but that increase in positive cases hasn’t been as high as the other nine zip codes, where positive test rates have remained above three percent for the last seven days.
The additional 11 zip codes include parts of Williamsburg, Bed-Stuy, Crown Heights, Brighton Beach, Kensington, Rego Park, and Auburndale.
In all neighborhoods, restaurants can still remain open for takeout and delivery services, similar to when the first citywide shutdown went into effect in March. The city will continue to monitor the situation for the next two weeks, and will allow schools and businesses to reopen — along with indoor and outdoor dining in the nine affected zip codes — if the cases fall below three percent in the next two weeks.
“This was not an easy choice to make, and let me be clear: we haven’t seen any issues in these schools. We must, however, be proactive about the safety and health of New Yorkers,” de Blasio said. “This is out of an abundance of caution and in coordination with a larger strategy that mirrors what we did successfully in the spring of a larger shutdown to make ensure we stopped the spread.”