Virginia Closings and Updates Due to Coronavirus

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March 18, 2020
Justin Sullivan / Staff



Gov. Northam issues ‘stay at home’ order for Virginia

Under the “stay at home order,” residents are allowed to travel only they if they are:

  • Seeking medical attention
  • Working
  • Caring for family or household members,
  • Engaging in outdoor activity with “strict” social distancing requirements
  • Obtaining good and services like groceries, prescriptions and others outlined in the Governor’s website.

The executive order directs all Virginia institutions of higher education to stop in-person classes and instruction, private camp grounds must close for short-term stays, and beaches will be closed statewide except exercise and fishing.

Read more here.


Track Virginia Cases here.


Executive Order – Only “Essential” Businesses (order and guidelines haven’t been posted online yet)

Effective midnight Tuesday, limits on businesses that serve the public.  All recreation and entertainment services will be closed.  Personal care services closed. Non-essential retail may stay open if they can adhere to 10 or fewer people, social distancing and increased cleaning.  Essential services will remain open but must maintain social distancing and increased cleaning.  All gatherings of over 10 are banned.  The EO will remain in effect for at least 30 days.  The state will post guidance on what is/isn’t essential.  The list is not exhaustive and will change regularly.  The expectations for those businesses that remain open are high – they must adhere to social distancing, cleaning, and make every attempt to keep everyone safe and healthy.


In short, businesses fall into three categories:

1)      Recreational and entertainment businesses – all must close

2)      Restaurants – only allowed takeout or delivery

3)      Non-essential brick and mortar stores – must operate by the new rules of 10 or fewer patrons, social distancing, increased cleaning


Enforcement will be done by localities.



All schools will stay closed through the end of the academic year.  On Tuesday, DOE will provide guidance on how to keep children learning.  Approx. 80k children of essential and medical personnel need childcare.  DSS and DOE will issue guidance on how to provide emergency childcare services for essential and medical personnel.


Communications –

Stepping up statewide communications.  Utilizing electronic highway signage.


Medical Supplies –

Virginia has distributed all materials we have received from the National Stockpile.


List of Closings and Updates:

  • Norfolk furloughs 550 part-time employees in response to Northam’s COVID-19 directives. More info here.

  • The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles is closed to the public until April in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Read more here.
  • Sentara is reopening it's drive-thru COVID-19 screening locations Virginia Beach and Williamsburg. They've added additional testing kits, the ability to test at these locations will be evaluated on a day-to-day basis as testing supplies allow, according to a Sentara press release. More info here.
  • Non-emergency evictions in Virginia have been suspended for at least 3 weeks. Read more here.
  • US-Canada border closing temporarily to nonessential travel. More here.

  • Onelife Fitness closes Virginia locations through March 31. More here.

  • New Apple update helps people know if they have the symptoms of the coronavirus. More here.

  • Va. schools closed through end of academic year. More Here.

  • For frequently asked questions regarding executive order fifty-three click here.

  • For an up to date map on where the cases in Virginia are by area click here.

  • The White House and Senate leaders announced a $2 trillion pandemic response measure on Wednesday that includes sending checks directly to people across the country impacted by the coronavirus crisis. Read more here.