Eight months have passed since the local and national economies initially shut down in response to the COVID-19 global pandemic. After a gradual, phased reopening, a large portion of economic activity returned to Greater Philadelphia, but the region is nowhere near its former commercial strength.

With another partial shutdown in place, the pace of recovery will likely be slowed, though not stopped altogether. Businesses and institutions that will remain open learned from their experiences and will be able to adapt quicker. However, the second round of shutdowns for restaurants, theaters, and other recreational businesses may prove dire. More than 
1,000 businesses in the region have already permanently shuttered.

Recent good news regarding vaccines, as well as the institutional support that could come with a Biden presidency, provide a path forward. If case counts are managed now, retail businesses will hopefully remain open through the holiday season, and restaurants and offices could reopen in the new year. Philadelphia, like much of the Northeast and country at large, is preparing for a difficult winter, but a safer and more economically secure 2021 is on the horizon.