Reopening rollbacks in Boston, other communities begin Wednesday

Reopening rollbacks in Boston, other communities begin Wednesday

BOSTON — Boston and several other cities including Arlington, Brockton, Lynn, Newton, Somerville, and Winthrop will have tighter restrictions starting Wednesday in an effort to reduce the spread of the coronavirus, which has again surged in Massachusetts.

Boston will return to what Mayor Marty Walsh described as a modified version of phase two of the state’s reopening plan.

Walsh said the steps were needed following a steady climb in COVID-19 cases in the weeks following Thanksgiving.

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“Unfortunately, we are at the point where we need to take stronger action to control COVID-19 in Boston,” Walsh said.

Under the tighter restrictions, several kinds of businesses will have to close their doors for at least three weeks beginning Wednesday including: movie theaters; museums; aquariums; (backslash)indoor recreational and athletic facilities (exempting college and professional sports); sightseeing and tour buses including duck boats, harbor cruises and whale watching cruises; indoor historical sites; indoor and outdoor gaming arcades; bowling alleys; driving ranges; batting cages; and rock-climbing facilities.

Other industries may remain open in Boston with additional restrictions.

Offices can remain open at 40% capacity. Indoor dining in restaurants can stay open with restricted bar seating and with a 90-minute limit on meals strictly enforced. Activities such as pool tables, darts, trivia, etc. will be prohibited.

Outdoor event spaces used for gatherings and celebrations and outdoor theaters and outdoor performance venues may continue to operate with a 25-person capacity limit.

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