How NYC restaurants are prepping for indoor dining: Poles, Plexiglas, UV lights

Big Apple restaurants say that safety is their main dish as they gear up to launch indoor dining on Sept. 30 for the first time in six months.

Thousands of places know that their customers are still nervous about catching the coronavirus indoors despite the city’s low infection rate — so they’re going the last mile to make the eating experience as safe as it can be.

At Asian jumbo Buddakan at 75 Ninth Ave. in Chelsea, managers will have 6-foot-long poles handy to show that tables are properly spaced under state and city rules if customers or inspectors complain. “The pole doesn’t lie,” said owner Stephen Starr.

Bluestone Lanes’ Kenmare Street and Greenwich Avenue locations installed “Far-UVC technology,” a type of ultraviolet light, to inactivate bacteria and viruses on clothing to augment the coffee cafes’ air-filtration systems.

Williamsburg’s massive Ainslie saved its communal tables from extinction by limiting them to eight customers each and separating parties with moveable Plexiglas dividers — although it might make thing less communal.

All of the eateries will abide by strict legal requirements. They include a maximum of 25% of legal capacity, enhanced air-filtration systems, temperature checks for customers, masks to be worn at all times except when at tables, and a midnight curfew.


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