The Rivers Casino in Philadelphia is to close its doors until at least the first day of next year after its ‘Safer at Home’ restrictions were released by the Pennsylvanian city.
In response to increasing cases of COVID-19 in Philadelphia, the City and Public Health Department have announced improvements to industry, event and gathering restrictions, and other activities to help flatten the disease curve, avoid overwhelming hospitals, and minimise the number of deaths from COVID-19.
On November 20, 2020, until January 1, 2021, the ‘Safer at Home’ restrictions come into force. It is warned that, based on trends in the spread of coronavirus across the country, an extension of these and/or the introduction of additional restrictions is likely.
Rivers Casino Philadelphia, the only land-based gaming company that is currently within city limits, will be forced to shut down its operation again as a result of the mandatory order. Next year the facility will be joined in the area by the $700m Live! Hotel and Casino.
Casinos come under a subset of ‘businesses and activities are not allowed’ and are followed by theatres, including cinemas and other entertainment spaces; bowling alleys, arcades and game spaces; museums; libraries; youth, community and school recreational activities and sports; and gyms and indoor exercise classes, while outdoor exercise groups and classes can continue.
In addition, high schools and colleges must switch only to online instruction, with the exception of clinical instruction for health science students, with approval to continue takeout, delivery and outdoor dining, while new limitations have been imposed on the latter.
“We may be tired of COVID, but COVID’s not tired of us,” Dr. Tom Farley, Philadelphia Health Commissioner, noted after implementing a comprehensive mandate to tackle the growing spread of cases across the city.
New guidance has also been provided by Philadelphia on improvements to events and meetings, more changes to capacity limits and other precautions for businesses and activities that can continue to operate, businesses and activities that can continue to operate under the Department of Public Health’s existing guidance, and a safety checklist.