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COVID-19: Reopening in the City of Boston

Many City services adjusted hours and operations because of the crisis. We'll continue to keep this page updated with the latest information as we begin to reopen.

Reopen Boston Fund

The Reopen Boston Fund will help small businesses put in place the necessary public health guidance requirements needed to reopen in the coming months.

Learn about the fund

Timeline for businesses

Timeline for businesses
All businesses deemed essential by previous orders remain open. These include:
  • grocery stores, bodegas, and pharmacies
  • laundromats and laundry services
  • gas stations, auto repair, and bike repair shops
  • moving and storage
  • hotels to accommodate essential workers and vulnerable populations
  • hardware stores, pet stores, postal stores (including private delivery companies)
  • banks, and
  • plumbers, electricians, and inspectors for emergency services.
Starting May 26, 2020:
  • The City will permit any construction type that is allowed by the state, with the required COVID-19 Safety Affidavits and COVID-19 Safety Plans for permitted construction work in place.
  • Auto dealers and wholesalers (for curbside pickup and delivery only)
  • Car washes
  • Drive-in movie theaters
  • Hair salons and barbershops
  • Lab spaces
  • Libraries, for curbside pickup and delivery only (excludes Boston locations). As of June 22, patrons will be able to pick up physical items at the Boston Public Library with the new “BPL to Go” program.
  • Pet grooming
  • Retail for curbside pickup and delivery only (such as clothing stores, toy stores, jewelry stores, nurseries and garden centers that don’t sell food products, adult use cannabis stores)
Starting June 1, 2020:

Phase 3, Step 1 will begin on Monday, July 6, except for Boston, where it will begin on Monday, July 13. The updated gathering advisory goes into effect on July 6 as well, except for in Boston, where it will take effect on July 13. 

The following businesses will be eligible to reopen in Step One of Phase III, subject to industry-specific rules concerning capacity and operations:

Revised Gatherings Order:

Under the updated gatherings order, indoor gatherings are limited to eight people per 1,000 square feet, but should not exceed 25 people in a single enclosed, indoor space.

Outdoor gatherings in enclosed spaces are limited to 25 percent of the facility’s maximum permitted occupancy, with a maximum of 100 people in a single enclosed outdoor space. This includes community events, civic events, sporting events, concerts, conventions and more. This order does not apply to outdoor, unenclosed gatherings if proper social distancing measures are possible.

This revised order does not supersede previously issued sector guidance, and is effective beginning Monday, July 6. It will be effective Monday, July 13 in the City of Boston.