New York museums, galleries to reopen from August 24

(File photo) NEW YORK, NEW YORK – JULY 31: A person walks on the sidewalk next to Asia Society and Museum as the city continues Phase 4 of re-opening following restrictions imposed to slow the spread of coronavirus on July 31, 2020 in New York City. The fourth phase allows outdoor arts and entertainment, sporting events without fans and media production. Cindy Ord/Getty Images/AFP


NEW YORK, United States (AFP) — New York’s museums, art galleries and other cultural institutions will be allowed to reopen starting August 24, state governor Andrew Cuomo said Friday after a five-month shutdown due to the coronavirus.

However, there will be mandatory face masks, timed ticketing with staggered entry and just 25 percent occupancy, he tweeted.

The reopening does not include performing arts venues, which will remain shut until the end of the year.

New York’s famed Metropolitan Museum of Art, which normally welcomes seven million visitors a year, said it would reopen on August 29.

“After nearly six months, The Met’s reopening will be a historic moment for the Museum and the City,” Met president Daniel Weiss said in a statement.

“Throughout the recent months of uncertainty, isolation and grief, we have longed for the day when we can safely welcome everyone back to The Met, where all can find comfort, inspiration, and a sense of community.”

The Whitney Museum of American Art will reopen on September 3 but the Museum of Modern Art has yet to announce its reopening date.

The Metropolitan Opera is scheduled to resume on December 31, while Broadway theaters will remain closed until at least January.

New York state was initially hard hit by the coronavirus and has recorded 25,232 deaths and 424,167 infections so far, Cuomo said in an update Friday.

He highlighted the state’s progress against the pandemic with under one percent of coronavirus tests proving positive over the past seven days.

© Agence France-Presse