More people in offices & shows under new COVIDSafe rules

By Our Reporter
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Bourke Street, Melbourne. Photo by Darren Nunison Unplash

With Victoria moving to 100 per cent of seated indoor and outdoor capacity for entertainment, cultural and sporting venues up to a maximum of 1,000 patrons per space from midnight of 9 April, the announcement comes as a major milestone for operators who can now sell more tickets, fill more seats and host more patrons.

Seated indoor and outdoor entertainment, cultural and sporting venues seeking attendance of more than 1,000 people per space must apply for consideration under the Public Events Framework. Events designated as Tier 1 or 2 will also remain at 75 percent, an official press release said.

In line with AHPPC guidance, the Chief Health Officer will work towards future easing of caps for ticketed seated indoor and outdoor entertainment, cultural and sporting venues of more than 1,000 patrons subject to epidemiology and compliance with mandatory QR code usage.

These venues include theatres, cinemas, music halls, concert halls, auditoriums, galleries, museums, and sports and physical recreation facilities.

A density quotient of one person per two square metres will still apply at these venues in non-seated spaces, such as lobbies, and all venues must continue to use the Government QR Code Service or API linked digital system for patrons and staff.

In other changes no density quotient will be applied in office-based workplaces except in publicly accessible areas such as lobbies. Previously, a density limit of one person per two square metres applied to shared spaces in the absence of a cap on the number of office workers.

This change means more Victorians can keep coming back to the office, which provides important flow-on patronage to cafes and shops located in our business precincts. Under the revised settings, no density quotients will apply for courts and tribunal facilities, or the Victorian Parliament.

It is still mandatory for every Victorian business with on-site operations to have a COVIDSafe Plan that demonstrates how they will meet important public health requirements set out by the Victorian Government.

Moving towards future changes to public health conditions on events will depend on the prevailing epidemiological conditions and compliance with record keeping and contact tracing obligations.

Minister for Health Martin Foley said, “Designated empty chairs at these venues can now be filled—and that’s a big moment for operators who will be able to run at 100 per cent seated capacity, with up to 1000 patrons per space, for the first time in almost a year.

“More people coming back to the office means more people visiting shops, cafes, restaurants and services throughout our business precincts, which are getting busier by the day. There are still important steps that venues and visitors have to observe to help us stay safe and stay open, such as the need to keep checking in at venues.”


For more information about current COVIDSafe settings or Victoria’s travel permit system, please visit www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au

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