When Will Counties in Grand Rapids Region Reopen? A Look at Regional COVID-19 Data
Our viewing area is reopening at different speeds due to Michigan’s decision to separate into different regions to re-engage the economy.
Counties in regions 6 and 8 were allowed to partially reopen dine-in restaurants and bars last week, as well as retail businesses and office work that could not be done at home.
But some northern Michigan counties are still not able to reopen because they’ve been grouped with Saginaw in region 4. That includes Oscoda, Ogemaw, Gladwin, and Midland counties.
The same goes for nine counties in our viewing area that have been grouped with Grand Rapids in region 2. That includes Mason, Lake, Osceola, Clare, Oceana, Newaygo, Mecosta, Isabella and Montcalm counties.
So, when will the Grand Rapids region join the Traverse City region and reopen? It’s a question we’ve been getting from our viewers in those counties.
How much longer will we have to wait to see more businesses reopen?
The state has released region-specific statistics that show how the different regions stack up in their response to the coronavirus.
Let’s take a look at the percentage of COVID-19 tests that come back positive in the Traverse City region, which has reopened.
This is the seven-day average for the tests.
Positive tests have dipped for the last few weeks.
Last week, less than 1% of the hundreds of tests being done each day came back positive in the Traverse City region.
Now here’s the same data from the Grand Rapids region.
That region has held pretty steady for the duration of the pandemic, but it has not been as successful at reducing the spread of the virus.
8.5% of tests being done each day in the area came back positive last week, far higher than areas like Traverse City that have reopened.
That goes to show that cities like Mount Pleasant, Clare, and Big Rapids will likely have to wait for those rates to decrease before businesses can reopen.