June 18, 2020 By Allie Griffin
New Yorkers will be able to dine out at their local restaurants Monday, as New York City begins the next phase of reopening.
Mayor Bill de Blasio confirmed today that the five boroughs will enter Phase Two of the state’s reopening plan Monday, noting that restaurants will be able to open outdoor seating.
Barbershops, hair salons, offices, playgrounds and in-store retail will also reopen Monday, as well as real estate and car leasing.
“A whole host of industries will come back to life,” de Blasio said.
The mayor outlined the city’s plan to expand outdoor seating space for restaurants.
Restaurants will be able to take advantage of a variety of options, including sidewalks seating, parking space seating, open streets seating and pedestrian plaza seating.
Eateries with backyards and patios can also seat customers in their outdoor spaces.
“We think this will help save at least 5,000 New York City restaurants.” de Blasio said.
Restaurants can open sidewalk seating, beginning Monday through October and curbside seating in parking lanes Monday through Labor Day.
Seating areas in parking lanes must be blocked from traffic with barriers, such as planters, and can only extend the length of the storefront. Sidewalk seating must maintain a clear path for pedestrians.
Restaurant owners can apply online for sidewalk and curbside seating and self-certify within minutes online, de Blasio said.
The city will also allow seating on full streets closed to traffic through the Open Streets initiative it launched during the pandemic.
The open streets seating will begin in July, as the Department of Transportation and community groups identify potential roads. The seating will be allowed on nights and weekends, de Blasio said.
“We’re thrilled to offer the streets and sidewalks to help our cherished restaurants come back to life,” said DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg.
An estimated 150,000 to 300,000 more New Yorkers will return to work in Phase Two.
The city has launched a hotline to help business owners navigate reopening and follow the state and city requirements. Owners can call 888-SBS-4NYC can visit nyc.gov/business for guidance.