SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) — With three more Bay Area counties moving into the Red Tier Wednesday, many local businesses are moving ahead with plans to welcome people back indoors.
On San Francisco’s Clement Street, there were people eating lunch inside for the first time in months. Wednesday morning, San Francisco, Napa and Santa Clara counties joined Marin and San Mateo counties in the state’s Red Tier for business reopening.
Business moving back inside are hoping things will stay that way.
For months, the sidewalks in San Francisco have been packed with people eating, drinking and doing their socially distant best to stay sane during the pandemic.
“We are pretty excited, because we’ve been waiting for a while,” said Charm Ratanshan at Thai restaurant Blackwood in San Francisco.
Restaurants are allowed to open at 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer under the Red Tier restrictions, but they aren’t the only businesses reopening this week.
Gyms and fitness centers can reopen indoors at 10% capacity, while movie theaters can also reopen at 25% or 100 people, whichever is fewer. Museums, zoos and aquariums are allowed to open indoor facilities at 25% capacity.
The de Young Museum in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park is planning to reopen at the end of the week, but the staff was already busy getting ready to welcome people back and make sure new COVID protocols are in place.
“It is so exciting. We’ve got hand sanitizer stations ready, we have social-distancing placements on the floor so people know to stay 6 feet apart,” said de Young spokesperson Shaquille Heath.
There will be a 10 p.m. cut-off time for indoor dining and retail stores will remain at the current 25% capacity limit rather than rising to 50% capacity.
Business and patrons alike are relieved to be moving forward and moving their things back inside, hopefully doing that for the last time.
“I hope everyone just cooperates and it’ll stay that way,” said Ratanshan.
“Everyone’s asking, When are you opening? When can I come see Frida [Kahlo exhibit]. We’re just so excited to be able to get the museum back open and get people back inside,” said Heath.