July 13 has been a beacon for restaurants in San Francisco since May, when city officials announced that indoor dining would resume on that date. Although outdoor dining has been operational since June 12, even with tables spread along sidewalks and in the street, restaurants are counting on a return to indoor dining to generate enough revenue to stay in business. But now SF’s restaurant lobby says the city has suspended plans to allow indoor dining, another rollback meant to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
According to a statement from the Golden Gate Restaurant Association (GGRA), “Well-placed city sources have confirmed that the July 13 date for the opening of indoor restaurants will not occur.” A GGRA spokesperson said a formal announcement is expected on Monday or Tuesday, and “at this time we do not expect to receive a new date.”
A city spokesperson says San Francisco Business Times that “Given the increase in cases and hospitalizations in San Francisco and the Bay Area, the city is revising its plans for reopening indoor restaurants,” but did not officially state that the date of the July 13 was cancelled.
Last week, California Governor Gavin Newsom ordered 19 counties in California, including Contra Costa, Santa Clara and Solano counties, to close indoor restaurants and bars as coronavirus cases continued to rise. throughout the state. Although San Francisco was not on that stop list, it voluntarily suspended a plan to allow outdoor drinking last month, saying then that a date for the reopening of bars depended on infection rates during the 4th of July weekend.
Meanwhile, Marin County had reopened for indoor dining on June 29, but shut down this weekend. KPIX reports that rising infection rates in the region prompted Newsom to add Marin to the shutdown list. On Sunday evening, authorities ordered the closure of all dining halls in the county for at least three weeks, reports KRON 4.
In Marin, San Francisco and every other county in California, outdoor dining, take-out and delivery are still allowed, but many say those services aren’t enough to keep them going. The GGRA agrees, saying the cancellation of San Francisco’s reopening on July 13 “is clearly both a disappointment and a blow to our industry.” However, it says “our greatest concerns remain the health of our workers, customers and state residents” and that “we are encouraged that dining out is still permitted.”