Dear Chicago Residents and Partners,
Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot and the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) this week announced that Chicago is on track to transition to phase three of the “Protecting Chicago” framework and will begin reopening on Wednesday, June 3. Cautiously reopening in phase three will still require strict physical distancing but will begin to allow for some industries to start reopening.
Regardless of industry reopening plans, all residents should continue to abide by important guidance in phase three, including: physically distancing and wearing a face covering; limiting non-business, social gatherings to <10 persons; staying at home if you feel ill or have come into contact with someone with COVID-19; and getting tested if you have symptoms. City of Chicago services that had been closed to the public including parks facilities and libraries will begin reopening on Monday, June 8.
Additionally, CDPH Commissioner Allison Arwady, M.D., issued a public health order extending the Governor’s Stay-at-Home Order in the city until Chicago reopens on June 3. The order also requires all Chicago parks, beaches, and trails on and adjacent to the Lakefront, the Chicago Riverwalk, and the Bloomingdale Trail (the 606) to remain closed until June 3. People can go out for a walk or a jog but they must maintain at least six feet distance from others. Boating and gatherings of more than ten people are prohibited.
For updates on the various epidemiological factors guiding Chicago’s reopening decisions, visit chicago.gov/coronavirus.
Sharing Our Streets – Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot, Commissioners Gia Biagi and Rosa Escareno from the Chicago Departments of Transportation (CDOT) and Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP) on Friday announced Chicago’s ‘Our Streets’ plan to open and convert residential streets and commercial corridors for alternative uses. First, the City plans to convert streets, or portions of those streets and cross-streets, in key commercial corridors throughout the City into expanded outdoor dining, providing much needed relief to restaurants of all sizes. The six corridors identified to pilot expanded outdoor dining are:
- Chatham: 75th Street from Calumet Avenue to Indiana Avenue
- Lakeview: Broadway from Belmont Avenue to Diversey Parkway
- Little Village: 26th Street from Central Park to Harding Avenue
- Rush & Division: Rush Street from Oak Street to Cedar Street
- Near West Side: Taylor Street from Loomis Street to Ashland Avenue
- West Loop: Randolph Street from Expressway no further than Elizabeth Street
More information on the application process and supporting documents will be made available on the website, as well, and the City will be hosting multiple informational
sessions with potential applicants in the coming days. Second, the City will also convert residential streets to provide Chicagoans with additional transportation options and space for outside recreational activities while safely social distancing. CDOT has already received more than 500 requests from Chicagoans, most of them to allow only local traffic along residential streets while opening them to pedestrians and cyclists – easing essential travel to transit stops and local stores, and allowing people to walk or run while maintaining safe distances. Neighborhoods may also request location-specific interventions that reflect local needs, including transit access improvements or collaborations with community groups to improve the accessibility and operation of streets. CDOT also made public new mobility guidelines as part of the ‘Be Safe Chicago’ campaign which provide clear indications of how Chicagoans can maintain safety as they return in greater numbers to walking, driving and riding a bike on Chicago streets. Residents looking to learn more about the
Our Streets program and to share their ideas and take a short survey can visit: chicago.gov/covidmobility.
The Second City’s Phased & Confused – Through a new partnership with legendary Chicago comedy institution, The Second City, the City will produce a weekly web series that will communicate information regarding the City’s “Protecting Chicago” five-phase framework guiding Chicago’s reopening process amid COVID-19. The show, titled “The Second City’s Phased & Confused” will premiere on both Mayor Lightfoot’s and The Second City’s Facebook pages beginning Thursday, June 4, and will feature a diverse lineup of engaging interviews with city officials and local heroes, original sketch comedy, animation, music, and special guests. Longtime partner to the City of Chicago, BMO Harris Bank, is the inaugural sponsor for the first five episodes of “The Second City’s Phased & Confused” series.
Industry Guidelines for Reopening – To allow businesses and organizations to prepare for the reopening, the City has released industry-specific guidelines for businesses, employees, and customers to follow as they begin to safely reopen on June 3. Industryspecific guidelines include details such as how businesses can engage in healthy interactions between workers and customers, how to maintain safe working spaces and conditions, and how to design and monitor workplace operations to create flexibility and maintain safety for employees and customers. The guidelines are aligned with the Stateissued guidelines, with additional specificity included for Chicago’s context. Specific guidelines for sporting events, religious services, outdoor performances, summer programs and youth activities, the Lakefront, and museums will be available later in phase three when those entities are predicted to begin reopening. Learn more at chicago.gov/reopening.
Chicago PPE Market – To support safe and efficient reopening, the City has partnered with local startup Rheaply to launch “Chicago PPE Market”, a program that will facilitate access to PPE for Chicago’s small businesses and nonprofits. Beginning May 26, using Chicago PPE Market, Chicago-based organizations will be able to connect with a network of local manufacturers and suppliers to access protective shields, reusable face masks, and hand sanitizer at cost-controlled rates. Buyers can register for the Chicago PPE Market at chicagoppemarket.com and then check their email for a link to access the online platform. To use the Chicago PPE Market, buyers browse available listings for reusable face coverings, hand sanitizer, and protective shields; request to purchase specific PPE based on their desired quantity and the advertised price; and communicate directly with the supplier through the in-platform messaging feature to agree on payment and pick-up or delivery details. More items may be added over the coming weeks.
Chi COVID Coach – The Chi COVID Coach app is developed to help you know what to do you have COVID-19 symptoms. Once you sign up, we’ll check back with you via text message. We’ll let you know what you and the other people in your household should do to limit the spread of COVID-19, help you know how long you need to stay separated from others, and give you day-by-day guidance throughout a potential isolation or quarantine period. Additionally, when you register with our Chi COVID Coach, we will alert you when COVID-19 approved antibody testing – and down the line, vaccination – is available. Learn more at covidcoach.chicago.gov.
Millennium Park at Home – If you’re missing Millennium Park’s renowned cultural programming, you can now enjoy “Millennium Park at Home” — a new series of virtual events presented by the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE). The concerts featuring local musicians and media hosts start with House Music on May 22 & 23 (6-8pm), followed by Gospel Music on May 29 & 30 and Blues Music on June 5, 6 & 7 to align with the previously-cancelled Chicago House Music, Chicago Gospel Music and Chicago Blues festivals. Watch the concerts at youtube.com/ChicagoDCASE.
Virtual Field Trips
Museum of Science and Industry
Take a trip with Mayor Lightfoot and spark your curiosity! See how science shapes our world and continues to improve lives. Be inspired by science every day.