Livermore’s plan to help downtown businesses safely reopen is building momentum as state and county coronavirus shelter-in-place restrictions gradually lift.
Since the city announced a downtown initiative to expand outdoor seating and retail into the public right-of-way two weeks ago, more than two dozen businesses have applied.
While Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) officials have not approved dine-in service at restaurants and in-person retail shopping, word is expected soon.
“ACPHD is monitoring the six indicators for positive signs before moving forward,” said Adam Van de Water, Livermore’s Director of Innovation and Economic Development. “If they do not see a significant increase as a result of recent loosening, or the Memorial Day weekend, we are preparing for approval to move further into Phase 2 (most notably for outdoor dining) within the next two weeks.”
To prepare, several changes are already taking shape.
Starting May 26, street parking on First Street from Maple to L streets is now limited to 15 minutes, and soon stretches will be lined with water-filled barricades to protect diners and shoppers from traffic.
Meanwhile, businesses and civic leaders took to Facebook on Memorial Day with a livestream video to demonstrate their readiness and commitment to reopen with modifications to keep everyone safe and limit the spread of COVID-19.
The professionally produced program hosted by Livermore Mayor John Marchand was a collaborative effort from Morii Collective, Livermore Downtown Inc. and Kiick It Up.
“No city is immune to the virus of itself, but as a conscientious community, we have the opportunity to fight the secondary infection of community division and economic despair without compromising health and safety,” Marchand said in the opening segment.
The livestream featured performances by local musicians and interviews with several business owners who shared how they’ve adapted their businesses in response to the pandemic and shared detailed descriptions of their opening plans, giving customers a preview of what they can expect when dine-in service and in-person retail are allowed to resume.
To view the video, visit https://bit.ly/Indy_BackToBusiness.