Mayor de Blasio orders 10 playgrounds to close, suspends parking rules through April 14

The mayor said, "It will help take the pressure of Elmhurst Hospital," which has seen a major influx of ICU patients and exhausted medical personnel.

News 12 Staff

Mar 31, 2020, 5:13 PM

Updated 1,567 days ago

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Mayor Bill de Blasio held a news conference Tuesday from the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing – a facility that will soon have 350 hospital beds for COVID-19 patients.
The mayor said, "It will help take the pressure of Elmhurst Hospital," which has seen a major influx of ICU patients and exhausted medical personnel.
To that end, Mayor de Blasio announced that 250 more ambulances are making their way to the city to handle increased 911 calls. He said that 135 are already in the city. Also, 500 EMTs are coming to help, with 270 already here.
NYC Health + Hospitals is also adding another 1,000 nurses this week through contracts it hashed out.
“These numbers are going to make a huge difference,” said Mayor de Blasio, who expects a surge in cases in the coming weeks.
The mayor announced that tax lien sales are being postponed until at least August, the suspension of alternate side parking rules are being extended through April 14 and 10 playgrounds are being closed due to too many people congregating in them.
Notes from the mayor's news conference are below. 
  • Mayor Bill de Blasio says New York City is working to triple hospital beds to 60,000 in the next few weeks.
  • The mayor is speaking from the USTA BIllie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing. It will have 350 hospital beds soon. "It will help take the pressure of Elmhurst Hospital," which has seen a major influx of patients. It will begin seeing patients next week.
  • Mayor de Blasio says 250 more ambulances are coming from FEMA and all over the country to help with influx of 911 calls. 135 are here already., 500 EMTs are coming from around the country, 270 are here already.
  • NYC Health + Hospitals is adding another 1,000 nurses this week. These numbers are going to make a huge difference.
  • Mayor de Blasio says New York City has a quarter of all COVID-19 cases in U.S. He expects a huge increase in cases next week.
    He is asking the military and other federal entities to step up support by April 5. He's waiting on a response from the White House. "We must have that additional personnel to be able to get through next week and the weeks after that."
  • To donate ventilators, NYC.gov/helpnow
  • Mayor de Blasio says they are distributing today 3 million surgical masks, 800,000 N95 masks, 600,000 pairs of gloves, 120,000 face shields, 40,000 surgical gowns.
  • There have been 900 inmates released from the jail system, so far. 
  • Nonessential construction sites must close immediately or face fines. 
  • Tax lien sales are being postponed until at least August.
  • Alternate side parking will be suspended for the next two weeks, through April 14.
  • Mayor orders 10 playgrounds to be closed due to social density issues. 
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