On Monday, May 4, Mayor Bill de Blasio publicly shared plans to close about 100 miles of the city's streets so that people can continue to practice social distancing.
If enforced, this could mean extra space for the city's restaurants, as many may decide to opt for outdoor seating options. While the businesses will still be demanded only to serve a fraction of customers at a time, there is no doubt that more customers will be served this way.
This possibility was discussed at the Mayor's recent press conference when it was raised by a
WNBC reporter. The Mayor seemed to find the idea very innovative and quickly mentioned that the administration has also brought up the idea and that they have started "discussions" about it.
Reopening restaurants with a directive that only a particular fraction of customers can be seated at a time has left many entrepreneurs disturbed. This is because the costs of running their business remain the same even though they are only allowed to serve a fewer number of people.
This has made restaurant owners very apprehensive of reopening with a capacity limit, so there is no doubt that they will warmly welcome the new tactic.
However, much of the reopening plans for NYC are still under discussion, and nothing has particularly been mentioned about restaurants even as the Mayor has announced that manufacturing and construction may start work as soon as the current stay-at-home May 15 deadline ends.