Chicago plans to fully reopen by Independence Day

Chicago Mayor Lori Lighfoot is setting her sights on a full reopening by July 4th and that has businesses breathing a sigh of relief.

The mayor says she wants the summer of 2021 to look more like the summer of 2019, and not 2020.

This goal will happen, city leaders say, as long as COVID-19 cases continue to decrease and vaccinations increase.

"This summer is going to be very different, very festive," Lightfoot said Tuesday.


A full reopening by Independence Day would mean no more restrictions or capacity limits on businesses.

For the owners of Haymarket Brewery and pub, that is welcomed news. Their kettles went dark during the pandemic and they only recently started brewing again.

"We didn’t have anywhere to sell the beer. We didn’t have people to sell the beer to," said Peter Crowley, co-owner and brewmaster of Haymarket Brewery and Pub.

He says the 100 percent capacity is great, but they still need tourists.

"I need the city to draw people from around the world and country, that’s a big part of our business," Crowley said.

"We've already announced, you know, more than 350 events this summer," said Chicago’s public health commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady. "We're going to be back and even if it's sort of coming a little bit in stages at the beginning, we want to make sure people are feeling comfortable."

P.volve fitness studio opened up in the West Loop during the pandemic and has never been at full capacity, but the manager says they will continue being cautious.

"We have all enhanced cleaning," said Drew Vassallo. "We want to make sure everyone feels safe."

Dr. Arwady said the city needs to stay under a 5-percent positivity rate. Right now the city is at 4.6-percent.

She adds that currently, 56-percent of Chicago's adults have their first dose of the vaccine. She would love to see that around 70-percent.