As expected, Alameda County officials announced that our county will move from the current coronavirus reopening purple tier into the states less-restrictive red tier.
This will allow for indoor dining for restaurants at 25% capacity, 50% capacity for retail, 100% capacity for grocery stores, and 10% capacity for indoor gyms and fitness centers. This change is effective beginning Wednesday March 10th.
In addition to Alameda County, Santa Cruz and Solano counties also moved out of the most-restrictive purple tier of the state’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy following declines in their case and test positivity rates. This brings the number of the region’s counties in the red tier to eight.
Whereas most business sectors were required to operate outdoors or remain closed under purple tier restrictions, the tier changes will allow the three counties to resume indoor operations at 10-25 percent capacities for businesses like gyms, restaurants, movie theaters, museums, zoos and aquariums.
Alameda County Health Officer Dr. Nicholas Moss warned that the risk of contracting the coronavirus still requires residents to take caution, especially with the majority of county residents not yet receiving a vaccine.
“Alameda County’s case rate is on the decline and vaccinations of vulnerable residents and our frontline workers are progressing but the COVID-19 pandemic is not over,” Moss said in a statement. “As more activities and businesses open indoors and more people from different households mix, the risk of becoming infected increases.”
Recent changes to the state’s guidance on crowds at large outdoor venues will allow the Oakland Coliseum to reopen after April 1.
The state also plans to modify the thresholds for assignment to each tier of the Blueprint in the coming days, based on the number of vaccines administered in the state’s hardest-hit communities.
The threshold changes – which would include pushing the number of cases per day per 100,000 residents required for purple tier assignment from seven to 10 – could potentially keep the Bay Area’s red tier counties out of the purple tier for much longer.
As of Tuesday, only Contra Costa, Monterey and Sonoma counties remain under purple tier restrictions in the 11-county greater Bay Area.
Read the full press release on acgov.org.