Washington to move to second phase of reopening next week amid Covid-19 pandemic

The capital of the United States is moving to the second phase of its reopening next week.

Washington, DC, officials say the anticipated spike in Covid-19 infections appears to have been successfully blunted by months of social restrictions.

Playgrounds, libraries, gyms and nail salons will be able to reopen on a limited basis starting Monday.

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All nonessential businesses will be allowed to let customers inside up to 50% capacity. Restaurants also will be able to seat diners indoors, also at 50% capacity.

Theaters, cinemas and concert venues will remain closed but they can apply for a special waiver from the District government.

Public pools will reopen on a limited basis, although Washington Mayor Bowser said earlier this week that it may take a few weeks to properly prepare the facilities.

Indoor gatherings of up to 50 people will be allowed, and houses of worship can hold in-person for 100 people or 50% capacity — whichever number is smaller.

As of Friday, the total number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Washington stood at 9,952, including 530 deaths.

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