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It's a Corona Virus Weekend NYC III

CoVid 19 Pandemic Continues to Keep Life in NYC & NYS on Hold

The Following Includes a Compendium of Closures & Expected Activity Resumption Dates [Subject to Change]

Updated March 29, 2020 from 3/27/20 / NYC Social Issues / NYC Neighborhoods / Corona Virus in NYC & NYS CoVid 19 / News Analysis & Opinion / Gotham Buzz NYC.

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysWeather. The Temperature highs will be in the high 60's Friday, dropping to 50 on Saturday and rising a bit to the mid 50's on Sunday. The temperature lows will be in the mid to high 40's all weekend. There is an 80% - 100% chance of a half inch of Rain on Saturday mid to late afternoon [3 - 5 pm] and a bit more than a half inch early Sunday morning [before 7 am]. Winds will be 5 - 10 mph all weekend. The Humidity will be rise from the mid 20% range Friday, to 60% Saturday and 80% Sunday. Click for NYC Weather.

MTA / Public Transit / Click here for the MTA Weekender.

The photo at right shows a man in Bryant Park last weekend enjoying a rare moment of solitude in the middle of a very densely populated city during the CoVid 19 shutdown.

 

On Thursday, March 26th, I headed toward CitiField to photograph it on what was supposed to be opening day. Major Leaugue Baseball was to begin that day with the Mets playing Washington at home, while the Yankees were to play Baltimore away.

 

Elmhurst Hospital is the Epicenter of Queens, which is Epicenter of NYC, which is Epicenter of NYS, which is Epicenter of the America

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysOn my way I stopped to visit Elmhurst Hospital which had been labeled the CoVid epicenter of Queens that same day. Queens had become the epicenter of NYC by reporting the most cases in the city, and New York City is the epicenter of NYS, which is the epicenter of the U.S.

I visited Elmhurst Hospital just as they had closed the testing tents, which ran from 6 am - 4 pm. I spoke to one of the healthcare professionals there, inquiring as to whether they thought that there had been an overreaction to the spreading virus.

I was told that the virus was new, mutating, very contagious, and more lethal than the flu - so it should be taken seriously and managed in accordance with the general health risks it poses. Within the prior 24 hours thirteen people had died at Elmhurst Hospital.

On the subway the number of people wearing masks over their faces had grown significantly. I also noticed, for the first time, that a number of people were also wearing plastic gloves. Not long from now, everyone will be wearing Hazmat suits.

Well, at least it was easy to get a seat, and even easy to maintain the social distancing.

The photo above shows the testing tent outside of the Elmhurst Hospital in Queens on Thursday. In the prior 24 hour period 13 people reportedly died.

 

Small Businesses Have Closed or are Closing - Nothing's Moving

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysOn my way home I stopped at a few small businesses I generally frequent. One had completely closed its doors for the past couple of days because business had been softening. I imagine staying open just wasn't worth the effort and expense. Another small business had shortened their hours, as business there had also softened, but there was still business moving. And at the third place I stopped, the owner told me they were going to close for a while, until things started moving again, as there just wasn't much / any business moving.

When I arrived at my own personal self quarantine station - which I used to think of as my apartment - I flipped on the tube. There in front of me were so many people, talking endlessly and saying so, so little. So I turned it off to restore a sense of calm.

What follows is a compendium of some of the major closings and announcements made over the past couple of weeks, as well as the anticipated time they plan to resume activity, but all subject to change.

The photo at right shows the business district on 82nd Street in Jackson Heights Queens during the middle of the day. As you can see, most businesses had closed.


It's a Corona Virus Weekend NYC III

CoVid 19 Pandemic Continues to Keep Life in NYC & NYS on Hold

The Following Includes a Compendium of Closures & Expected Activity Resumption Dates [Subject to Change]

Updated March 29, 2020 from 3/27/20 / NYC Social Issues / NYC Neighborhoods / Corona Virus in NYC & NYS CoVid 19 / News Analysis & Opinion / Gotham Buzz NYC. Continued.

 

National Sports Seasons Postponed or on Hiatus including Major League Baseball, the National Hockey League & the National Basketball Association

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysAll Major League Baseball games were cancelled, at first until April 9th, but opening day was subsequently pushed back to May 11th, but that - like most resumption dates - remains tentative. As you can imagine, the CitiField and the parking lot were empty.

On March 11th the NBA suspended their season, when a player tested positive for the Corona Virus. Resumption of play remains uncertain at this time.

The National Hockey League suspended play on March 12th. When NHL play will resume also remains uncertain, and their draft has also been postponed.

And the Big East Conference of NCAA Basketball cancelled the remainder of its tournament on March 12th.

In the photo at right you can see the empty parking lot at CitiField on what was supposed to be opening day of the 2020 Spring season. The MLB tentatively postponed opening day to May - see details above.

 

CDC Proposes Social Gathering Limit of 50 People

CoVid is Reportedly More Transmissible & Fatal than the Flu

NYC and NYS Go Further - First Suggesting a Limit of 50 People, then Reducing the Limit to 10 People, & Now Limiting Gatherings to Members of the Same Household - 'Social Distancing'

In March of 2020 the CDC began recommending no events more than 50 people [knbr.com 3/16/20]. But since the CDC announcement, NYC reduced limits to 10 people, before advising its denizens to limit their gatherings to only members of the same household.

In addition to limiting gatherings the CDC, NYC and NYS government authorities have advised people to try to maintain six feet of distance between each other [social distancing] in order to stop the spread of CoVid 19, which is highly transmissible via surfaces and also the air.

At present, CoVid has an estimated fatality rate appears to be significantly higher than the flu. I've seen estimates that indicate the CoVid fatality rate is 10x - 20x more lethal than the flu, but I've also seen much lower estimates of the fatality multiple vis a vis the flu [eg. 2x - 3x], although those estimates seemed to come from less reliable sources.

 

Arts, Cultural and Sporting Venues Close Until ...

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysNaturally these pandemic thwarting directives sent shockwaves through the artistic, sports and cultural centers of New York City and its boroughs.

But limiting the size of social gatherings wasn't all that was done to slow the spread of the virus and its attendant impact on the healthcare infrastructure and the death rate associated with the virus.

In the photo at right is Times Square last Saturday near lunch time. There wasn't much moving, even though it was a beautiful Spring day.

 

*** Note that all dates suggesting the resumption of activity or reopening are subject to change, pending a more clear outlook of the health risks and potential mitigations regarding the CoVid 19 pandemic.

 

Governor Cuomo Puts NYS Public Schools on Hiatus & Mayor de Blasio Follows Suit for NYC Public Schools

On March 12th, 2020 Governor Cuomo announced that CUNY / SUNY were closed for the semester beginning March 18th. The Governor had closed NYS public schools through March 30th. This week Governor Cuomo announced that the opening of NYS public schools would be pushed back as necessary, and he then extended the NYS Public School closure through Wednesday, April 15th.

Mayor de Blasio held off making the dramatic decision to close NYC Public schools, but eventually relented, responding to parental and union pressure, announcing on March 15th that - beginning March 16th through Monday, April 20th - that the NYC Public School System would be closed. Bear in mind all closure dates are subject to extension or even cancellations.

 

Public Transportation & MTA Changes

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysSo what's closed down and when will it open?

On the transportation front there were a number of announcements this past week including the suspension of Alternate Side Parking until March 31, 2020, but Parking Meters remain in effect. I believe this will be updated on a week by week basis, so please pay attention by visiting - https://www1.nyc.gov/html/dot/html/motorist/alternate-side-parking.shtml

This week the subway schedule during weekdays was reduced to weekend frequency, except during rush hour as ridership has plummeted.

This week NYC announced it is closing a street in every borough so folks can walk around on it, without worrying about traffic. The program is akin to the Summer Streets program in August so people can practice social distancing.

The NYC Spring Streets are: 1) along Park Avenue from 28th to 34th streets in Manhattan, 2) along Bushwick Avenue from Johnson to Flushing Avenue in Brooklyn, 3) along 34th Avenue between 73rd and 80th streets in Queens, and 4) along the Grand Concourse between Burnside and 184th Street in the Bronx. No designation was made for Staten Island as the population density there is far lower than in the other boroughs. The closures are temporary, running from Friday through Monday from 10 am - 7 pm.

The photo at right shows an empty Times Square Subway station last Saturday in the late morning.

 

NYC Citywide CoVid Closures

On March 20, 2020 Governor Cuomo announced a 90 day moratorium on both residential and commercial evictions until June 20th.

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysNY Courts are open for essential business only.

At first the New York Public Library announced it would only be open to lend books., but by March 12th had announced it would be closed until March 31st. On March 20th the NYPL announced it would be closed indefinitely and the time period on books would be extended until after they had opened again.

Tax filing deadline for U.S. federal returns is july 15, 2020. NYS State tax deadline followed the deadline postponement of the U.S. federal government. But if you file on time, your tax refund will be remitted as normal. And you can use the extra time to contribute to your IRA if you have one. NYS sales tax filing is still required, but the fees and interest on late payments will be waived.

The Archdiocese of NY is asking parishoners to celebrate mass at home until further notice.

In the photo above you can see that the subways were largely empty [this was around 3 pm Thursday 3/26/20] and that many people are now wearing masks as they ride them. It's also possible to practice social distancing on the subway at present, and I've noticed an increasing number of people wearing plastic gloves.

This week Governor Cuomo announced that the 2020 presidential election primary in NYS will be moved back from April 28th to June 23rd.

Enforcement of the NYC Plastic Grocery Bag Ban has been delayed until May 15, 2020.

This week the Tony Awards announced that it was postponing the program - scheduled for June 7th at Radio City Music Hall in Manhattan - pending further notice.

 

 

Bronx Borough CoVid Closures NYC

The Bronx Zoo closed in order to protect the animals from catching CoVid 19 from us.

The NY Botanical Garden was closed March 15th and will announce its reopening when the CoVid situation become more clear.

 

Brooklyn Borough CoVid Closures NYC

The NY Transit Museum is closed until further notice.

The Brooklyn Museum closed March 13th. It will open when the CoVid situation becomes more clear. They plan to use this time to undertake a thorough cleaning.

Using this time to sanitize facilities seems like something everyone should be using this time to do.****

 

Manhattan Borough CoVid Closures NYC

The Tribeca Film Festival scheduled for April 15 - 26 was postponed until further notice.

Lincoln Center will be closed until May 17, 2020, assuming it's safe at that time to resume.

The photo below shows Lincoln Center on a nice Saturday mid morning [3/21/20] - completely empty.

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysThe American Museum of Natural History on the West Side announced it would close. It has ramped up some of its online programming in the interim.

The next event scheduled at the Javits Center, as of this report is June 4th - the Small Business Expo.

The Auto Show has been re-scheduled at the Javits Center for August 18th - September 6th. There are two press days immediately preceding the show.

All three locations of the Metropolitan Museum, including the Met Breuer and the Met Cloisters and the Met Museum on the East Side will close indefinitely. The Met will make an announcement on its website as to when it will reopen.

The Frick cancelled events through April 3rd and said it will monitor the situation before making any announcement to reopen.

Carnegie Hall cancelled all events through May 10th, 2020. They will refund tickets between the announcement and the planned reopening - from March 12th to May 10th - but they asked patrons to consider making a donation of their ticket price to the Carnegie.

The South Street Seaport Museum is closed effective March 13th until further notice.

 

Queens Borough CoVid Closures NYC

The Queens Borough Presidents election was postponed on March 15, 2020 by the Mayor. No date was set at that time, so it's pending further notice. The election was to occur on March 24th.

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysThe Queens World Film Festival scheduled for March 19 - 29 moved the program to an online show.

The Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, Queens is closed at least through April 3rd, but based on other reports we're seeing, that is likely to be extended.

Flushing Town Hall and the Queens Museum are closed pending a more clear outlook on the Corona Virus.

No notices were posted on the Jamaica Center for Performing Arts and Jamaica Center for Arts & Leanring websites, but I suspect they too are closed pending a clearer picture of the CoVid 19 outbreak.

In the photo at right you can see the taxi stand on 42nd Street outside of Grand Central Station. The wait was very short.

 

Staten Island Borough CoVid Closures NYC

The National Lighthouse Museum on Staten Island is closed pending a more clear outlook on CoVid 19. The next event they have scheduled is May 20th for Fleet Week.

Effective March 20, Snug Harbor suspended all events at all sites at the center pending a more clear the outlook on CoVid 19.

 

Old Saying 'Cleanliness is Next to Godliness'

Probably Because Those Who Kept Things Clean, Likely Weren't as Ravaged by Illnesses

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysOne aspect of this pandemic that both government officials and the media have NOT emphasized enough is the importance of CLEANLINESS.

On the Home Front Now is a good time to clean all of the devices and surfaces you touch regularly to reduce your chances of contracting the virus. Things like door knobs, light switches, TV clickers, mouses, keyboards, cell phones, auto steering wheels, radios and climate control dials, are likely the most touched, least cleaned surfaces in your various abodes. But there are other surfaces that should be kept clean too, like table tops, sinks, floors and bathrooms. The CoVid germs can remain contagious on these surfaces for days, so clean them regularly. One cleaning doesn't do it. It has to become a new routine.

On the Business Front, given things are slow, now is a good time to sanitize your infrastructure especially if you serve the public. I suspect that the importance of the cleanliness of an establishment will rise markedly in post CoVid NYC and could become a factor in helping you win or lose business. In the old movies the bartenders and owners at diners were shown regularly wiping the bars and counters as this was a time when the threat of germs was of greater concern than here in America in recent times.

In the photo above right, a man wears a plastic glove to hold onto the subway pole. I found somewhere between a quarter and half of the people riding in the same subway car as me that day, to be wearing plastic gloves. And even though is was in the middle of the afternoon, on the second busiest subway line in NYC, that only amounted to about three or four people.

Stay calm and collected, and eventually - like all joys and miseries - this too shall pass.









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