chicago reopening

Chicago COVID Restrictions: Lightfoot Says City Could Fully Reopen by Mid-June

Both Chicago and the state of Illinois plan to enter a transitional Bridge Phase on Friday

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With Illinois slated to fully reopen and enter Phase 5 of its COVID reopening plan next month, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot says the city may follow a similar timeline.

Speaking at an event alongside Gov. J.B. Pritzker Monday, Lightfoot said she certainly hopes Chicago can fully reopen by June 11, which is when Illinois plans to enter Phase 5, however she didn't commit to a specific date.

"We're headed in the right direction," the mayor said. "But everything about this pandemic has to have an asteroid of caution, because of the twists and turns, and as the governor and doctor said, we've got to get people vaccinated, so that we can get ahead of these variants."

Last week, Lightfoot revealed Chicago was on track to be "fully open" by the Fourth of July holiday and said such a shift will take place when the city sees "continued improvement in COVID metrics and more widespread vaccine uptake."

On Monday, she voiced worries about rising COVID metrics that have been reported in multiple neighborhoods, emphasizing the city is focusing its efforts on those locations.

Chicago most recently announced changes to its reopening plan in late April, expanding capacity at a number of businesses and allowing for the return of fans in the stands at the United Center.

Both Chicago and the state of Illinois expect to enter a transitional Bridge Phase on Friday, which will allow for higher capacity limits at places like museums, zoos and spectator events as well as increased business operations during a transitional period between the current guidelines and a full reopening.

Barring any significant reversals in key COVID-19 statewide indicators, Illinois will move into Phase 5 on June 11. While the phase will allow for capacity limits to be lifted, among other changes, Pritzker said the state will continue to follow mask guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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