CHICAGO — The city could be “fully open” without capacity limits by July 4 under Mayor Lori Lighfoot’s new plans.
Lightfoot said Tuesday morning her goal is to have the city reopened in early July. It would mark a major shift in Chicago, where capacity restrictions and business closures have been used for more than a year to slow the spread of coronavirus.
Similarly, Gov. JB Pritzker said the state is on track to reopen by July 4.
But those plans could change if there’s another uptick in coronavirus metrics.
New cases and hospitalizations rose for several weeks in March, but they’ve fallen or plateaued recently. Officials have said the city and state can continue to reopen so long as those metrics don’t rise again — and they’ve urged people to keep getting vaccinated to prevent another rise.
Lightfoot just eased up on current coronavirus restrictions Thursday, allowing festivals, conventions and other indoor activities. She’s said Chicago will move into the “Bridge Phase” with the rest of the state by May 13 if the city doesn’t see a rise in cases or other metrics.
Under the Bridge Phase, the city will expand operating hours for bars and restaurants, among other changes.
The Bridge Phase, which is defined by the state, allows even greater capacity at various industries.
It’s the final step before Illinois moves into Phase 5, which is a relative return to normalcy where there are no more capacity limits.
Everyone 16 and older is now eligible to get vaccinated in Chicago and across the state.
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