New Pennsylvania regulations for gathering sizes will operate on a sliding scale determined by venue capacity, which will allow for larger crowds.
Previously, gatherings were capped at 25 people for indoor events and 250 people for outdoor venues, The Philadelphia Tribune reported. The new limits, implemented by Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf, will be based on a calculator that considers venue capacity and whether or not the event is held outdoors.
Philadelphia also loosened crowd size restrictions, but to a lesser degree than statewide regulations, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. Crowds of up to 7,500 will be allowed at the city's largest outdoor venues, including Lincoln Financial Field, the home of the Philadelphia Eagles.
Statewide occupancy rates for outdoor venues will be 25% for venues with a capacity of up to 2,000 people, 20% for venues with a capacity between 2,001 and 10,000, and 15% for venues with a capacity greater than 10,000. No outdoor event may exceed 7,500 people, The Philadelphia Tribune reported.
Indoor venues may have up to 20% capacity for venues that can hold up to 2,000 people, 15% for venues with a maximum capacity of up to 10,000, and 10% for venues that can hold greater than 10,000 people. No indoor venue may have greater than 3,750 people.
The new limits exclude groups of people who share space within a building on a regular basis, which means offices and classrooms will still be under the old restrictions, The Philadelphia Tribune reported.
Despite the more flexible limitations on gathering size, masks and social distancing will still be required in all public spaces, as they have been since July. Philadelphia has had a high rate of mask compliance, according to a New York Times survey.
While Ivy League sports have been canceled until at least 2021, the new regulations will allow professional and college sports teams to have fans in the stands. The Sunday game between the Philadelphia Eagles and Pittsburgh Steelers will be among the first impacted.
The plan is still subject to change if contact tracing finds that events led to outbreaks, The Philadelphia Tribune reported.
“We know everyone has sacrificed in many ways and today’s announcement reflects a gradual adjustment to our lives as we learn how we can do things safely until we have a cure, or an effective vaccine is widely available," Wolf said in a press release.