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After three bleak months, New York, the corner of the US hit hardest by the coronavirus, gradually began reopening on Monday in what was seen as a landmark moment in the crisis and a test of the city’s discipline.
With the virus in check, at least for now, many stores previously deemed non-essential were cleared to reopen – for delivery and pickup, though not browsing inside. Construction, manufacturing and wholesalers also received the go-ahead to resume.
“This is a triumph for all New Yorkers that we’ve gotten to this point,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said. More than 400,000 workers were expected to return to work on Monday. Before the pandemic, New York City had the highest employment on record, with 4.5 million people working in the city each day.