NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – New York City reached a major milestone in Phase 2 reopening Monday, but the morning commute was anything but typical.

Smaller crowds on subways were a reminder that businesses are not operating at full capacity.

READ MORE: 'The Loss Of A Hero': New York Mourns Death Of 22-Year-Old NYPD Officer Jason Rivera

Nonetheless, as CBS2’s Hazel Sanchez reports, the first day of Phase 2 means more people are returning to the workplace.

MORE: MTA Announces Service Increases In Phase 2 As Ridership Grows; Officials Urge Riders To Wear ‘Masks, Masks, Masks’

“It’s getting a lot more hectic. But, at the same time, people are staying far away from each other,” said Carlos Junco.

“We are now moving 2 million customers on New York City transit subways and buses together,” said MTA Chairman Pat Foye.

That’s not even close to the pre-pandemic ridership of more than 7.5 million a day.

PHOTOSNew York City Enters Phase 2 Reopening

Some commuters are choosing to carpool.

“From what I hear, it’s spotless. But, I’m not comfortable taking it yet,” one commuter said.


Leaving the “work from home” environment for the first time has been exhilarating for many people.

“It’s great. It’s been a long time being at home and in an apartment and staying in the same place all day long. There were days when I didn’t leave my apartment for three days,” said Elizabeth Lorber, a business owner.

READ MORE: Dozens Gather In Harlem To Pray For Families Of NYPD Officers Shot While Responding To Domestic Dispute

MORENew York City Reaches Phase 2 Reopening For Outdoor Dining, In-Store Retail, Offices, Salons And More

Lorber and entrepreneur Monifa Pendleton were both glad to get back to a workspace at Luminary, a community collaboration hub for women that reopened Monday in midtown.

“It’s great. It’s refreshing. It’s one of these things where you just have to not succumb to your fears,” said Pendleton.

CORONAVIRUS: NY Health Dept. | NY Call 1-(888)-364-3065 | NYC Health Dept. | NYC Call 311, Text COVID to 692692 | NJ COVID-19 Info Hub | NJ Call 1-(800)-222-1222 or 211, Text NJCOVID to 898211 | CT Health Dept. | CT Call 211 | Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Luminary founder and CEO Cate Luzio has taken precautions: setting up strict safety guidelines, sanitation stations and cleaning staff working around the clock.

“It’s exciting that we’re part of Phase 2 and I think that now people can come and be a part of the community physically again and reconnect,” said Luzio.

Convene on 5th Avenue has some high tech safety measures in place.

There are temperature screening stations before you walk in and offices are laid out at a safe social distance.

The cafe is only preparing pre-ordered bento boxes.

They also have an on-site doctors office.

“The biggest challenge we have is creating psychological safety. And we’re doing everything that we can as a company to make sure that we’re creating an environment that will create that,” said Convene CEO Ryan Simonetti.

MORE NEWS: Lashawn McNeil, Suspect In Deadly Harlem Police Shooting, Was On Probation, Had 5 Prior Arrests

Companies like Convene also have mobile apps where employees are required to check-in, take a survey and record their temperature.