Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez has expanded the list of businesses that are allowed to reopen following COVID-19 closures. The City of Miami Beach, which has often implemented stricter rules and timelines, will follow along on this one allowing gyms, fitness studios, tattoo parlors, massage studios/parlors to reopen effective June 8, 2020.
As of Friday, June 5, legal short-term rentals licensed by the City of Miami Beach were allowed to reopen subject to the requirements laid out in Miami-Dade County Emergency Order (EO) 24-20.
Dog parks were allowed to reopen on Friday as well though not all had been unlocked.
The County order also allows bars, pubs and nightclubs that are licensed by the State for food service to sell food and alcoholic beverages for onsite consumption, something Miami Beach has allowed since restaurant reopenings began on May 27. Standalone bars and nightclubs are still not allowed to reopen, and entertainment – such as the shows at The Palace and Mango’s on Ocean Drive – is still prohibited.
Youth sports activities, with social distancing and safety rules, may also resume in Miami Beach beginning Monday.
Summer camps are also included in the County order for a Monday opening. In Miami Beach, virtual camps will start on the 8th with regular on-site camps beginning “at reduced levels” of attendance on the 15th, according to City Parks Director John Rebar. Due to the rules around social distancing, Rebar said the City will only be able to accommodate 25% of its normal camp attendance. That means a reduction from the usual 1,483 campers per week to 369. Because registration took place pre-COVID for the year-round child care program which includes after-school, winter and spring break camps as well as summer camps, Rebar said it is unlikely there will be any further camp registration as the summer camps are now full at the reduced capacity.
Movie theaters, concert houses, auditoriums, playhouses and bowling alleys may reopen if they submit a COVID mitigation plan to the City and County and receive approval.
At Friday’s special meeting of the City Commission, Miami Beach City Manager Jimmy Morales who had just received the new County guidelines said opening those venues "is a significant step… The question really is, are we ready at this point to see these things move forward?” At a minimum, he said, he would want the City to also review and approve plans. Some of the venues impacted include the Fillmore, Colony Theater, New World Symphony, and the Bandshell.
While there is no specific target date for their reopening, Gimenez has indicated “He is willing to entertain proposals from these institutions on how they would reopen, what would be the rules,” Morales said.
“As a body, are we ready to do that? I’m not sure we are,” Morales said, though he noted the City has been open for three weeks without a surge in new coronavirus cases.
Commissioner Ricky Arriola, a strong proponent of reopening sooner rather than later, said it takes a while for these venues to book acts. He said he was in favor of having them “work up and submit plans… There’s no harm in getting the process rolling.”
Commissioner David Richardson said, at this point, “We don’t even know if anybody wants to [open]… Ask these institutions in our City if they want to open and, if they do, what’s their plan?”
“The Rhythm Foundation would love to open the Bandshell,” Morales responded. “Miami New Drama would probably love to get going sooner rather than later” at the Colony Theater. The New World Symphony, he noted, usually takes the summer off. “There is value in asking them to think about it,” he said.
Following the Commission's direction, Morales agreed to run parallel with the County effort to review plans before making any decisions.
The beaches, which were supposed to open June 1, have remained closed while Miami-Dade County is under a curfew due to unrest over the killing of George Floyd by police officers in Minneapolis. The curfew has been a moving target… starting at 10pm, moving to 9, then midnight, then back to 10 pm last night following new protests.
With large crowds anticipated for the beach reopenings, the County has committed resources to municipalities to help maintain social distancing. While those resources are diverted, Gimenez ordered beaches to remain closed.
Friday morning Morales told Commissioners, “Our current anticipation” is that beaches will open on Monday, “unless something happens over the weekend’ that is “problematic” from a safety perspective. Friday night, following additional protests, Gimenez moved the midnight curfew up to 10 pm until further notice. So, TBD on the beaches.
For more comprehensive information on the emergency orders and reopening plan, visit the City’s website at https://www.miamibeachfl.gov/reopening/.
Miami Beach Gyms, Fitness Studios, Tattoo Parlors, Massage Studios Allowed to open Monday:
Beaches “anticipated” to open as well
As budget planning is underway, concerns over property and resort tax revenues weigh heavily
Commissioners will consider proposed budget balancing recommendations