Chicago News and Media

Reopening Chicago



As part of our Phase IV: Gradually Resume guidelines, the reinstatement of certain restrictions will go into effect Friday, July 24 at 12:01 a.m.

Restrictions include:

  • Bars, taverns, breweries and other establishments that serve alcohol for on-site consumption without a retail food license will no longer be able to serve customers indoors
    • Restaurants that serve alcohol will be allowed to continue to operate as long as they abide by ongoing COVID-19 guidance and existing regulations
    • Establishments without food may still provide outdoor service as they did under Phase III guidelines
  • Maximum party size and table occupancy at restaurants, bars, taverns, and breweries will be reduced to six people (indoor or outdoor)
  • Indoor fitness class size will be reduced to a maximum of 10 people
  • Personal services requiring the removal of face coverings will no longer be permitted (shaves, facials, etc.)
  • Residential property managers are asked to limit guest entry to six people per unit to avoid indoor gatherings and parties

These restrictions, as part of Phase IV guidelines, are in effect until further notice. Continuing checking this website for the most up-to-date information.

Phase IV Gradually Resume

Industry Guidelines for Reopening

View Guidelines

Where we are 

Currently we are in: PHASE IV

Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, we have been committed to basing our decisions on the science and data related to this disease and communicating our actions to the public in an open and transparent way. This chart shows how we plan to return to work and life as well as protecting our health during each phase.

How we determine the current phase

The details for each phase are being informed by economic and health data, and a combination of input from industry working groups, health experts and the public. The specific health criteria for transition between the latter phases will be established and released over the coming weeks to ensure the City is open and responsive to new data and information as it arises. 


Card Image

Goal is to limit interactions to rapidly slow the spread of COVID-19

Limit the amount of contact with others

WORKEssential workers go to work; everyone else works from homeLIFEStay at home and limit going out to essential activities only

HEALTHPhysically distance from anyone you do not live with, especially vulnerable friends and family


Card Image

Goal is to continue flattening the curve while safely being outside

(Guard against unsafe interactions with others)

Essential workers go to work; everyone else works from home

Stay at home as much as possible

Wear a face covering while outside your home

Physically distance from anyone you do not live with, especially vulnerable friends and family


Card Image

Goal is to thoughtfully begin to reopen Chicago safely

Strict physical distancing with some businesses reopening

Non-essential workers begin to return to work in a phased way

Select businesses, non-profits, city entities open with demonstrated, appropriate protections for workers and customers

When meeting others, physically distance and wear a face covering

Non-business, social gatherings limited to ≤10 persons

Phased, limited public amenities begin to open​

Stay at home if you feel ill or have come into contact with someone with COVID-19

Continue to physically distance from vulnerable populations

Get tested if you have symptoms


Card Image

Goal is to further reopen Chicago while ensuring the safety of residents

Continued staggered reopening into a new normal

Additional business and capacity restrictions are lifted with appropriate safeguards

Additional public amenities open

Continue to wear a face covering and physically distance

Continue to distance and allow vulnerable residents to shelter

Get tested if you have symptoms or think you have had COVID-19


Card Image

Goal is to continue to maintain safety until COVID-19 is contained

Continue to protect vulnerable populations

All businesses open

Non-vulnerable individuals can resume working

Most activities resume with health safety in place

Some events can resume

Sign up for a vaccine on the COVID Coach web portal

PHASE IV Re-opening Metrics Update for July 25, 2020

This analysis presented on data through July 22, 2020

For detailed report: download Phase IV Metrics Update Report.
For the most current daily COVID data, please see the Daily COVID Dashboard at CasesSevere OutcomesEmergency Department VisitsPercent PositivityHospital CapacityDiagnostic TestingCase Investigation and Contact Tracing

Phase IV: Gradually Resume

Goal: Declining rate of new citywide cases over 28 days and/or less than 200 new cases per day over 14 days

CAUTION: Pause and Monitor

IndicatorGoalCurrent StateSub-Phase
COVID-19 Case Incidence   
CitywideStable or DecliningDecrease(6/18-6/22)Increase(6/22-7/1)Decrease(7/1-7/6)Increase(7/6-7/12)Decrease (7/12-7/17)Daily New Cases: 212CAUTION: Monitor
BlackStable or DecliningDecrease(6/18-6/23)Increase(6/23-7/2)Stable(7/2-7/5)Increase(7/5-7/13)Increase(7/13-7/17)CAUTION: Monitor
LatinxStable or DecliningStable >28 daysCAUTION: Monitor
WhiteStable or DecliningStable(6/18-6/21)Increase(6/21-6/29)Stable(6/29-7/6)Increase(7/6-7/12)Decrease(7/12-7/17)CAUTION: Monitor
AsianStable or DecliningIncrease(6/18-6/28)Decrease(6/28-7/5)Stable(7/5-7/12)Decrease(7/12-7/17)GO: Continued Progress

CDPH COVID-19 Phase IV starting June 26 2020 

 Stop: May need to delay moving aheadCaution: Pause and monitorGo: Cautious progressGo: Continued progressGo: Advanced progress
7-day rolling daily average
Any sustained increase >14 days within phaseIncrease 0-14 days (in most recent 14 -day period)Stable or decrease 0-13 days (w/o increase in most recent 14- day period)Stable or decrease 14-28 daysStable or decrease >28 daysand/or sustained <200 new cases per day(~100 cases per 100,000 persons)
7-day rolling daily average
7-day rolling daily average
COVID Emergency department visits
7-day rolling daily average
Positivity rate
7-day rolling daily average
Hospital system capacity
7-day rolling daily average
>1280 non-ICU beds>480 ICU beds>360 ventilators>1000 non-ICU beds>400 ICU beds>300 ventilators<1000 non-ICU beds occupied by COVID patients<400 ICU beds occupied by COVID patients<300 ventilators occupied by COVID patients
Testing capacity
7-day rolling daily average
Unexplained decline in testing <4500 tests/dayExplained decline in testing <4500 tests/dayStable testing >4500 total tests/day
Response capacityN/AN/AInitiate case investigation within 24h of assignment for    50% of cases           75% of cases        90% of cases

How we move between phases

Chicago is monitoring the answers to these four questions in order to decide when and how to reopen.

01 – Is the rate of disease spread across the city and surrounding counties decreasing?

three people standing with masks on
  • Tracking cases, hospitalizations, ICU admissions, testing, and deaths across city and region
  • Monitoring cases over time by zip code, age, sex, race, and ethnicity (and direct resources where they are most needed)

02 – Does the city have the testing and contact-tracing capacity to track the disease and limit spread?

a lab worker at her desk
  • Scaled-up testing across the city
  • Tracking percent of positive tests

03 – Are there enough support systems in place for vulnerable residents?

a senior walking outside a store
  • Shelters and housing for vulnerable populations
  • Increased testing at nursing homes
  • Food delivery and specific store times for senior citizens
  • Food security for CPS students and meals through Greater Chicago Food Depository

04 – Can the healthcare system handle a potential future surge (including beds, ventilators, PPE)?

three people setting up hospital beds
  • Adequate ventilator and PPE supply
  • Surge capacity for hospital and ICU beds
  • McCormick ready for overflow

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.