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NSW Restaurants, Cafes and Pubs Will Be Allowed to Increase Their Outdoor Capacity From October 16

And outdoor music performances will be able to host up to 500 people, too.
By Sarah Ward
October 13, 2020
By Sarah Ward
October 13, 2020

While New South Wales started easing out of lockdown a few months back, life definitely hasn't returned to pre-COVID-19 normality. Slowly, however, more and more restrictions are continuing to relax — including, as just announced today, Tuesday, October 13, current caps on outdoor venues and events.

As revealed by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, from Friday, October 16, restaurants, cafes, bars, pubs and clubs will be able to adopt the one-person-per-two-square-metre rule outside, but only if the business has an electronic QR code to track patrons. Indoor areas and venues will remain at the present level, which is one person per four square metres.

In terms of events, outdoor music performances will be able to have up to 500 people in attendance, all seated, in a boost for live gigs. These concerts will still need to adhere to the one-person-per-four-square-metre rule — and each event will need to have an organiser, and a COVID-safe plan in place. That 500-person limit includes both the audience and the performers.

Trent van der Jagt

Commenting on the changes, NSW Minister for Health and Medical Research Brad Hazzard advised that the plan is to "bring back life to New South Wales" — and that more restrictions will be eased in the future. He noted, though, that any additional steps "must be done in a COVID-safe way".

The news comes just a couple of weeks after NSW also changed patron caps at indoor arts venues, such as theatres, cinemas and concert venues, up to 50-percent capacity to a maximum of 1000 tickets. And, prior to that, the state announced that its major stadiums could also host 50-percent capacity crowds, but only for major outdoor events, a move that came into effect on October 2 to coincide with the NRL finals season.

For more information about the status of COVID-19 in NSW, head to the NSW Health website.

To find out more about the status of COVID-19 in Australia and how to protect yourself, head to the Australian Government Department of Health's website.

Top image: Trent van der Jagt.

Published on October 13, 2020 by Sarah Ward

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