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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The Downtown Partnership released its annual report on the state of downtown Baltimore and there are concerns about the effects of the pandemic, but leaders with the organization are still optimistic.

“The areas that were impacted, as you can imagine more significantly tourism, restaurants, some of our cultural institutions… and those are the ones that we really have to rally behind now,” said Shelonda stokes, President of the Downtown Partnership.


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The organization had positive projections for 2020. Stokes said hotel accommodations were up and that was an indication that tourism was also up.

But now, Stokes said after conducting a survey with approximately 150 businesses, 94 percent said the pandemic affected them significantly.

“If you talked about it last year coming into this, it was an amazing time for us,” Stokes said. “All of the trends were up. talking about occupancy, business and tourism, all of those were trending well, and then COVID happened.”

Another area of concern is crime across the city. Homicides are up compared to the same time in 2019. 158 people were killed this time last year, compared to at least 164 so far in 2020.

Non-fatal shootings are down from 356 this time last year to 300 as of Tuesday, June 30.

“Any level of violent crime in unacceptable,” said Councilman Eric Costello.

But the councilman said overall, crime has decreased in the city, and he’s hopeful business owners will be able to recover.

“We want to be supportive of downtown, because we know when downtown is successful, the rest of the city can be successful,” said Costello.

The Downtown Partnership also wants to expand the central district’s economic footprint beyond the city center into every surrounding neighborhood.

Randy Bropleh owns Home-Maid, a Fed Hill restaurant less then two miles from downtown. He said when tourism is up, so is business.

“If you look at any major city, the traffic goes downtown,” he said. That’s where everything is happening. So when you have people coming into your downtown patronizing and indulging, and then sightseeing… if downtown does well, it can only spread.”

The Downtown Partnership said some businesses may not survive the coronavirus pandemic, and that’s why they are urging people to get out there and support local businesses.

For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.

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COVID-19 : This is the new rearrangement of the Historic Center to avoid cases COVID-19

Coronavirus —

The Government of Mexico City announced a new operating plan for the Historic Center to prevent cases of COVID-19 in the economic reopening

Due to non-compliance with sanitary measures by businesses, the Historical Center of the Mexico City it will undergo a new rearrangement, in order to avoid a regrowth of COVID-19.

Rosa Icela Rodríguez, the government secretary of the capital, reported that in an inspection carried out this Saturday, it was detected that out of 1,068 establishments, 158 essential premises and 18 non-essential activities had activities when they were banned this weekend, warnings were issued to those in charge.

From June 29 to July 3, he added, 81 percent of businesses fully complied with sanitary measures, such as signaling to keep a safe distance, safety filters, sanitizing mats, antibacterial gel and correct use of mouth masks and masks.

Let’s say that throughout the week it was a great effort by the merchants of the Historic Center, but we still lack compliance with various measures to reach 100 percent, ”he said.

As part of the new measures to prevent COVID-19, starting on July 6, more streets in the Historic Center will be added to pedestrianization, to facilitate healthy distances.

The only streets in the Historic Center of the CDMX that will not be pedestrianized. Semovi photo

They will also be installed sanitary filters on the busiest streets, to take the temperature to people and ensure their use of the mouth mask.

Also I know they will close streets in which 30 percent of businesses fail to comply with sanitary measures, while businesses will be warned with 15 days of closure.

The Government secretary recalled that the assistance to the Historic Center It must be done by one person per family and wearing the face mask at all times.

We want to reiterate to the population that the COVID-19 pandemic has not yet ended, therefore we must take measures together and take the necessary precautions to avoid the spread of contagion, ”he added.

It should be noted that on Friday, the head of the Government of Mexico City, Claudia Sheinbaum, reported the closing of the Historical Center during this Saturday and Sunday for non-compliance with the measures imposed to guarantee the health of people before COVID-19.

The closure occurred at the end of the first week of the capital at the orange light of epidemiological risk. However, it was decided to continue in the same color for the following week.

Until July 4, in Mexico City there are 51 thousand 658 accumulated confirmed cases of coronavirus and 6 thousand 921 deaths.

With information from López-Dóriga Digital

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