In Philly, small steps toward normalcy as city continues to cope with COVID-19

Pat Loeb
July 06, 2020 - 5:10 pm

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio)  The Philadelphia Health Department reported nearly 300 newly confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the city over the July Fourth weekend, but there are some hopeful signs as well as some city services get back to normal.

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A dozen children gathered at the Mander Playground in North Philadelphia, masked and socially distanced, waiting for the signal. Just after 11 a.m., water spouted from the sprayground and they ran toward it.

“What I don't want to lose sight of in all this is what we're here for, and we're here to give our kids a decent life in the city despite all that's going on,” said Mayor Jim Kenney.

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He said he regrets not being able to open pools this summer but is glad the spraygrounds are back. 

Council President Darrell Clarke hopes it makes summer a bit more bearable.

“We have to come back with some sense of normalcy for these young people,” Clarke said. 

Despite the case count, there are hopeful signs in the city's numbers too. 

New hospital admissions have fallen to single digits, and there have been no new cases in long-term care facilities in more than a week. 

Testing is also up above 2,500 a day, so new cases are about four percent of the total, which is a good sign.

“It's not something any of us wanted to do in my second term as mayor and his new term as council president but we're dealt the hand we're dealt with and have to deal with it as best we can,” Kenney said. 

Regular weekly recycling collection also resumes this week.