Blacksburg officials announced they will enforce ordinances within the town limits on game days to limit large gatherings of people, as well as promote social distancing and mask wearing.
“It’s so important for the town and the university to work together on this because we both want to protect our communities,” Blacksburg Mayor Leslie Hager-Smith was quoted in the same release. “Game days are special to our community, too, and we look forward to the time when we can come together again and enjoy Hokie football together. However, the pandemic requires us to make different, difficult decisions to preserve public health.”
The recent COVID-19 numbers in the area likely factored into the decision. Sands released a separate statement on Tuesday addressing the 157 positive cases the university reported on Monday (15.5% positivity rate), bringing the overall total to 178.
He said in the letter released on Virginia Tech’s news website that “the report was not unexpected” given the influx of students to campus in recent weeks, but cautioned that the university is ready to make changes “should the number of new cases not stabilize and decline,” which could include scaling back university operations.
Meanwhile, the waiting game continues on how many spectators will be welcomed into Lane Stadium on opening day.
If the current state guidelines are not modified — attendance for outdoor events in Virginia is limited to 1,000 people — Tech has announced admission would be limited to “families of our student-athletes, the coaches, and the visiting team.”
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