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Brazilian city of Sao Paulo announces reopening of parks, gyms with restrictions

Xinhua | Updated: 2020-07-10 09:03
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Passengers wearing protective face masks stand inside a train at a metro station amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Sao Paulo, Brazil, June 25, 2020. [Photo/Agencies]

SAO PAULO - The Brazilian city of Sao Paulo announced on Thursday that the return to the "new normal" will include the reopening, starting next Monday, of 70 parks, squares and gyms that have been closed since March.

Sao Paulo Mayor Bruno Covas was authorized by the city government to reopen the public areas with restrictions as the occupancy of intensive care beds in the city's hospitals has dropped below 65 percent.

"We will do everything with the necessary care so that there are no crowds," Covas said at a press conference.

The reopening of parks and squares is part of an array of measures, including the opening of street shops and shopping malls for a limited time per day, as well as bars and restaurants, which are now authorized to operate until 5:00 pm local time.

Visitors in parks will be monitored for compliance in performing permitted activities, such as running, walking, or biking and group activities in parks will still be prohibited.

"The drinking fountains will be out of operation and it will be mandatory to wear a mask," said Covas.

Gyms and fitness centers are also beginning to adopt the necessary biosecurity protocols for their reopening next week.

The state of Sao Paulo has registered 16,788 deaths from COVID-19 and is the area that has been the most heavily affected by the disease in the country.

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