Boston Closes Gyms, Museums And Other Venues Amid COVID Reopening Rollback

By Jason Hall

December 14, 2020

Mayor Marty Walsh announced a rollback to a modified Phase 2 of Boston's reopening plan on Monday in an effort to slow a spike in COVID-19 cases throughout the city.

Several businesses, including gyms, museums and other venues, will be closed for at least three weeks, Mayor Walsh announced during a press conference via CBS Boston. The new order will go into effect on Wednesday and local officials will reevaluate where the city is three weeks later.

“Our goal with this three week pause is to slow the spread now, so we can avoid more severe shutdowns later on,” Walsh said.

Museums, movie theaters, aquariums and indoor event spaces will all face mandatory closures during the revaluation period. In-person fitness centers, health clubs and gyms will also be forced to close, but one-on-one personal training will be allowed to continue.

Indoor bowling alleys, driving ranges, batting cages and rock climbing gyms will also face mandatory closures during the next three weeks. Retail stores, hair salons and restaurants with indoor dining will be allowed to remain open, but face more restrictions and bar seating will be prohibited.

“This is not about targeting specific sectors that cause the virus. This is an effort to reduce overall activity outside the home,” Walsh said via CBS Boston.

Several other Massachusetts cities including Arlington, Brockton, Lynn, Newton, Somerville and Winthrop, have already put similar restrictions in place amid Governor Charlie Baker's announcement to roll the state back into Phase 3, Step 1 of its reopening plan, which went into effect at midnight Sunday.

Walsh confirmed the city of Boston had a COVID-19 positivity rate of 7.2% for the week ending in December 6. Boston Chief of Health and Human Services Marty Martinez said there are currently more than 300 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 related symptoms in Boston, which is the most since June, CBS Boston reports.

Photo: Getty Images

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