New York is planning to reopen large venues in the city this month.

Back in March 2020, clubs and live music venues across New York City were forced to close as a result of an order by mayor Bill DeBlasio, to help slow down the spread of the coronavirus.

It has now been announced by NYC governor Andrew Cuomo that the city, which was one of the worst impacted at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, will begin to reopen venues later this month with precautions in place.

Following successful trials of sporting events, venues can reopen from the 23rd February 2021 with approval from the state’s Department of Health, and attendees must provide a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of the event. Masks will also be mandatory, and temperatures of guests will be checked on arrival. If the venue’s capacity is larger than 10,000, crowd numbers will be limited to 10%.

“The truth is, we cannot stay closed until everyone is vaccinated” Cuomo said in a statement, “the economic, psychological, emotional cost would be incredible.”

In August last year, over 150 venues in New York banded together to form New York Independent Venue Association.

Yesterday (10th), it was revealed that New York State is set to host over 300 free pop-up arts and music performances in a bid to “accelerate the revival of the arts” and “revitalise the spirit and emotional well-being of New Yorkers”.