The 33% limit will remain in place, for now, starting that date, Cuomo said. "All the arrows are pointed in the right direction". "It's time to readjust the decision made on the science and on the data".
Western New York had a 7-day average positivity rate of 3.38% - still the highest in the state - while the statewide 7-day average positivity rate was at 1.84%.
"This is a major reopening of economic and social activity", Cuomo said.
In addition to lifting capacity restrictions, the governor also said that outdoor dining curfews will end on May 17, while indoor dining curfews will end on May 31.
The percentage of New Yorkers who have had at least one vaccine dose is 46.5%, while the percentage of New Yorkers with the completed vaccine series is 34.9%. Capacity as stadiums will increase to 33 percent. On May 19, the indoor gathering limit will increase from 100 to 250 people.
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, and Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont today announced a significant easing of COVID-19 pandemic restrictions on the region's businesses, venues and gatherings given significant progress in vaccinations and sustained reduction in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. Capacity can increase if all individuals are fully vaccinated or present proof of vaccination.
However, as a practical matter, some may not be able to, because the six-foot distancing rule remains in effect.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio previously said in March that Broadway was aiming to reopen by the fall. Ultimately, the state controls the reopening of localities.
To assist restaurants in ramping back up, Cuomo said he would also end the curfew on travel by subway.
"Overnight workers like waitresses, bartenders, and more depend on Transit to get around in the late-night hours".
Cuomo said NY has worked with New Jersey and CT on the regionally-coordinated reopening and beginning May 19 most capacity restrictions will end across the tri-state region.
"We take our duty to keep riders safe seriously - which is why our mask mandate and disinfecting regimen will continue, and we will keep pressing the City to provide the police and mental health resources needed to accommodate returning customers".