Illinois to enter ‘Bridge Phase,’ Gov. Pritzker plans to fully reopen state by June 11

Updated: May. 10, 2021 at 5:36 PM CDT
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CARBONDALE, Ill. (KFVS) - Illinois is taking steps to begin the process of reopening the state.

The “Bridge Phase” is set to begin on May 14.

The state will transition from phase 4 to the bridge phase then to phase 5, which is fully reopened.

Governor JB Pritzker plans to have the state fully reopened by June 11.

Capacity limits in retail, offices, zoos, gyms and sporting events will increase to 60 percent.

There will also be a change in the percentage of people allowed in waiting areas at restaurants.

Standing areas indoors will now be bumped up to 30 percent and outdoor waiting areas will now be at 50 percent capacity.

“For all practical purposes, it really doesn’t mean much to us at this point in time,” said Steve Payne, owner of Quatros.

Payne said they are still seeing more carryout orders than customers dining inside the restaurant.

“We’re still doing way more curbside then I thought we would be doing when we opened up the restaurant. And even at half of the tables, I’m very seldom full,” said Payne.

Management at Common Ground Coffee Shop in Carbondale said they are also ready to see more people indoors.

“I’m hoping so. When I first started working here we had tables everywhere and we were always packed. And I mean since the pandemic we haven’t had a whole lot of people coming in to sit down or working on homework the way that they used to,” said Allison Burch, Common Ground’s assistant manager.

The coffee shop hopes to return to normal when the state fully reopens in June.

“We really do miss seeing you guys and we really miss having that sense of community here. So, we hope you come see us really soon,” said Burch

Even with an increase to capacity limits, Payne is still preaching patience.

“Patience is still going to be required for a while until restaurants can get back up to speed. Both fully staffed and to be able to address when they have the ability to put more tables back into their operations,” said Payne

According to the governor, if the state sees an increase in COVID-19 case numbers, the state can always jump back a previous phase.

Click here for more information on the state’s “Bridge Phase.”

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