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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Rapid Update: Phase One of Ontario re-opening plan to begin May 19th

  • Today, Premier Ford announced that Stage One of the provincial re-opening framework will begin on May 19th. A full list of businesses and facilities allowed to open is available here (PDF link). Key rules for businesses will include:
    • All construction to resume and essential workplace limits lifted, including land surveyors.
    • In addition to retail operating online, or with curbside pickup and delivery, all retail stores can open under the following restrictions and guidelines:
      • No indoor malls. Must have a street-front entrance (i.e., stores with dedicated street access/storefront).
      • Open in-store by appointment and/or by limiting the number of people in the store at any one time. Retailers would need to restrict the number of customers per square metre — for example, one customer per 4 square metres (43 square feet) — to ensure physical distancing of 2 metres at all times.
      • Only fitting rooms with doors may be used, rather than curtains, to facilitate disinfecting. Retailers must restrict use to every second fitting room at any one time to allow for cleaning after use and ensure physical distancing.
    • Vehicle dealerships and retailers may now open fully, including:
      • New and used car, truck, and motorcycle dealers
      • Recreational vehicle (RV) dealers (e.g., campers, motor homes, trailers, travel trailers)
      • Boat, watercraft and marine supply dealers
      • Other vehicle dealers of motorized bicycles, golf carts, scooters, snowmobiles, ATVs, utility trailers, etc.
    • Office-based media operations involving equipment that does not allow for remote working may open, for example:
      • Sound recording, such as production, distribution, publishing, studios.
      • Film and television post-production, film and television animation studios.
      • Publishing: periodical, book, directory, software, video games.
      • Interactive digital media, such as computer systems design and related services (e.g., programming, video game design and development).
      • Media activities that can be completed while working remotely have been encouraged to continue during the Restart phase.
      • Filming or other on-site activities, especially those that require the gathering of workers, performers or others are not permitted to resume in Stage 1
  • The Premier urged businesses only to open if they are ready to do so and can implement the needed safety and distancing measures. The public health situation will be monitored closely, and no timeline for Stage 2 can be given yet.
  • The Premier also announced that as of 12:01am on Saturday, May 16th, private parks and campgrounds may prepare for the opening of the season, marinas and boat clubs may open for recreational use, golf courses may open with clubhouses for washrooms only, and businesses that board animals, such as stables, may allow boarders to visit, care for or ride their animal.