Waterloo Region will be one of over 20 areas of Ontario that will be allowed to enter Stage 3 of the province's reopening plan on Friday, July 17.
The announcement was made by the Ford government on Monday afternoon.
The new rules will see restaurants, gyms, movie theatres and casinos reopen, with limits on how many people can be inside at a time.
Here's how the gathering limits will change in Stage 3:
- Indoor gathering limits will increase to a maximum of 50 people;
- Outdoor gathering limits will increase to a maximum of 100 people;
- Gathering limits are subject to physical distancing requirements
The province says it will still require people to practice physical distancing with anyone who is not in their 10-person ``social circle.''
"Our success in reducing the spread of COVID-19 and getting Ontario to a place where we are ready to reopen most of the province is a testament to the hard work of business owners, individuals and families right across the province," said Premier Doug Ford.
"So many have stepped up and played by the rules, demonstrating that we can restart our economy safely and responsibly. Small actions can make a big difference. Now more than ever, we must continue to follow the public health advice to preserve the progress we have made together," he added.
The health minister also says as we enter Stage 3, it's never been more important for all residents to continue to practise physical distancing and wear a face covering when doing so is a challenge.
Waterloo Region's mandatory mask bylaw just went into effect on Monday morning.
Meantime, ten regions including Toronto, Halton and Hamilton are not ready to proceed to the next stage, therefore they will stay in Stage 2.
with files from The Canadian Press