Governor Charlie Baker on Tuesday announced that lower-risk communities in Massachusetts can reopen some businesses under Phase 3, Step 2. The state has currently been at a holding pattern at Phase 3, Step 1 since the summer.
The reopening goes into effect Oct. 5.
Lower-risk communities are defined as cities and towns that have not been a “red” COVID-19 spread community in any of the last three Department of Public Health weekly reports.
An official in Baker’s office said the state will release a list Wednesday of communities that cannot move into the next stage of reopening. The list will be determined based on the last three weekly public health reports, including the data that comes out in Wednesday’s weekly health report.
A look at the latest weekly data available:
Here’s a look at what will change, according to the state:
- Indoor performance venues will now be allowed to open with 50 percent capacity with a maximum of 250 people.
- Outdoor performance venue capacity will increase to 50 percent with a maximum of 250 people.
- For arcades and indoor and outdoor recreation businesses, additional Step 2 activities like trampolines, obstacle courses, roller rinks, and laser tag will also be permitted to open, and capacity will increase to 50 percent.
- Fitting rooms will be allowed to open in all types of retail stores.
- Gyms, museums, libraries, and driving and flight schools will also be permitted to increase their capacity to 50 percent.
The new guidance does not address:
- Stadiums and arenas, Baker said during a press conference Tuesday afternoon.
The governor also released the following update on the state’s gathering order:
- The limit for indoor gatherings remains at a maximum of 25 people for all communities.
- Outdoor gatherings at private residences and in private backyards will remain at a maximum of 50 people for all communities.
- Outdoor gatherings at event venues and in public settings will have a limit of 50 people in Step I communities, and a limit of 100 people in lower risk, Step II communities.