City Starts Releasing More Timely Covid Data; 94 Positive Cases on UWS in Past Week


Photo by Jeffrey Zeldman.

The city has created a dashboard for Covid-19 cases by zip code, and the data is much more up to date than previous efforts. The Upper West Side continues to have a low positivity rate, though that differs somewhat by zip code.

For the whole neighborhood, there were 8,851 tests between October 31 and November 6. And 94 of those came back positive. That’s a 1.06% positivity rate, compared to 2.31% for the whole city. There’s evidence now of a citywide increase in cases, with four consecutive days of at least 1,000 positive results. On Monday, the total positivity rate reached 3.58%, according to Councilmember Mark Levine.

Levine wants to make college students who plan to stay in New York after Thanksgiving remain in the city during the break rather than having them go home and then return.

If the weekly rate exceeds 3%, public schools could be closed. The mayor is considering things like limits on indoor dining to slow the spread.

NEWS | 40 comments | permalink
    1. Linda says:

      Deadly mistake that the mayor hasn’t outlawed eating and drinking on the subway and buses. Maskless riders are taking their time drinking coffee and eating. How is this any different from indoor drinking and dining,which is considered a serious risk? In addition,the subway cars are smaller than restaurants, have no room for distancing 6’feet, and the number of riders isn’t limited to 25% of capacity. It’s time for the city council and mayor to act!!

      • m.pipik says:

        While it would be a nice idea how would this be enforced? The police? Yeh, right. They don’t do the enforcement they are already supposed to do.

      • Carlos says:

        Great point – that is a really easy one and I don’t know why they don’t do it. I wanted them to do it pre-covid, and now it is even more important.

        I agree that the people sipping their coffee on the train are the worst – drink it before you get on the train, or drink it when you get to your destination.

      • EdNY says:

        (1) Not sure the mayor can do anything about it – the MTA is run by the state.
        (2) Do you really think a regulation against eating or drinking on the subway is going to change anything?

      • Sid says:

        There is ZERO evidence that this has caused any kind of cluster of COVID cases.

        • RCP says:

          Thank you. One rational mind among eight million. Let the anxiety-riddled stay home and keep their thoughts to themselves. The stress they’re spreading is doing far more long-term health damage than Covid-19.

      • AC says:

        It amazes me that people still think the mayor runs the MTA.

        • Iris says:

          You are absolutely right the MTA is not run by the mayor any more than is the Port Authority. Usually referred to as a quasi government organization. Neither is Metro
          North run by the mayor which is in desperate need of federal funding or they and the city will suffer terribly.

      • Michael P Muscaro says:

        Eating is illegal on the Subway. Enforcement is non existent

      • J. L. Rivers says:

        More than outlawing eating and drinking in the subway, I think city officials should be looking into the enclosed outside spaces that restaurants are putting up in order to comply with the 25% capacity limitation inside.
        Those spaces, as beautiful as some of them are, simply replicate the enclosed spaces that we are trying to avoid. They worked well in the warmer months, when there was no need fo enclosures to keep the breeze and cold air out. But now that they have been sealed off from the elements, we are basically back to square one.
        I hate thinking about this because the solution is not pretty and restaurants are struggling, but if we are going to fight the spread of the virus, those spaces are not helping.

    2. ZoomZ says:

      I was under the impression that once Trump was defeated at the polls the Covid-19 will just go away gently into the night.
      I guess I’ll have to wait until January 20, 2021 for it to actually happen.

      • Irish says:

        I was under the impression that once Trump was defeated, the over politicizing of every news story would just go away gently into the night.
        I guess I’ll have to wait until January 20, 2021 for it to actually happen

      • UWS-er says:

        That is what Republicans said, that it was all a hoax that would go away after Nov. 4. Guess not.

      • World Peacenik says:

        It was Trump who said that Covid would disappear. It is good that he was defeated.

      • Barr-Barian says:

        Good point. It will take a very long time to undo the cosmic damage he’s done to the country with his downplaying the virus from the outset, mocking people who wear masks, holding tightly packed rallies with not a drop of social distancing. All you have to do is look at the incredible number of people associated with the Trump White House who have been infected to understand what he’s done to this country.

    3. Zanarkand says:

      94 cases over a 7 day period in an area as populated as the UWS is amazing. Rural America leaders would love to have those types of numbers. Keep the masks up!!

    4. RL says:

      Looks to me that they just need to shut Staten Island down. Problem solved.

    5. JS says:

      The dark sliver all the way West – Riverside South and new Waterline Square buildings?
      What’s up?

      • i heard it on the blvd says:

        my understanding was that in the 10069 zip code (riverside BLVD) there were 9 positive cases (i heard it was 2 households) but because of the number tested, it came out to 3% positive rate.

    6. ST says:

      Large groups of people forty and under gather in the parks and restaurants with no masks and no social distance. They make the parks and streets unsafe for everyone. So what will it take? A bunch of Millennial and post Millennial deaths?

    7. Star says:

      I have a real concern with the way outdoor dining is being handled. People are socializing, eating, drinking, laughing, with individuals outside of their household, sitting next to and across from each other at the same table, potentially infecting each other.

      In addition, tables are not appropriately distanced from one another to effectively mitigate infection spread. In reality, diners from different parties are not minimum six feet away from each other or from people standing/walking on the adjacent sidewalks/street. It is very easy for an unknowingly contagious person to infect others.

      When people are laughing and having a good time, contagious droplets/air can spread even greater distances, to neighboring diners, up to 10 feet and more.

      Take a walk in your neighborhood, and observe the many crowded tables. See the close proximity of maskless people to one another. Think about how long they are sitting in one spot, close to each other, talking and laughing. Now imagine one person is contagious, two people are contagious, three people are contagious.

      The higher the infection rate in our community, the greater chance someone sitting at our table or a neighboring table is contagious, and that is how COVID works its way back into our lives.

      We are fortunate that infection rates in most of the city have been generally low. However, with increased infection/positivity rates, there is increased opportunity for COVID to spread. It is a numbers game.

      I worry that our relaxed attitude toward outdoor dining, under the false assumption that it is inherently safe (just because it is allowed), will provide for an opportunistic further increase in COVID infection.

      • UWSTJ says:

        Read the data. The virus continues to kill around .03% of those infected. People have weighed that data against all the rest that is at play and chosen to live their lives in whatever normalcy is allowed, while supporting area businesses so that the neighborhood and city survive. It’s not just millennials, I’ve talked with many older folks who have come to the same conclusion. The virus isn’t going anywhere, and waiting for the vaccine is not the answer, we have to find a way to live with it. Many are doing just that.

        • charles becker says:

          The number is correct. .03% is .0003 That is 3 deaths per 10000. The odds are probably higher when crossing the street,

          It is time to stop the hysterics. In NY it is a power grab by Cuomo and De Blasio who like to push people around. OF course public school teachers love it. They are getting paid full salary and not having to face a classroom of unruly children.

          • Pat Franklin says:

            I’m a public school teacher. We do not LOVE it. The large majority of us would MUCH prefer to be teaching ALL of our students in the classroom where we can reach them all, teach them all, and know that they are safe with us. Contrary to what you seem to believe, with no evidence (do you even KNOW any NYC public school teachers?), remote and blended learning are difficult, stressful, and a poor substitute for teaching and learning int the classroom. Please speak to teachers and students and inform yourself before you offer an opinion about something you appear to know nothing about.

        • GriseldaUWS says:

          It’s not about dying. It’s the severe symptoms, some that can last for months or possibly forever we don’t know yet (lung damage, brain fog, chronic fatigue, etc). This virus is a crap shoot and that is what scares me. People are gambling with their lives and others’ lives.

        • NN says:

          The current mortality rate in the US is 2.3% of confirmed cases. https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/data/mortality

          That mortality rate is also dependent on the health care system not being overwhelmed. If the hospitals fill up and not everyone can be treated, the mortality rate skyrockets.

          I don’t actually disagree that we need to measure the risk vs return in a nuanced way and keep living our lives as much as possible, but covid is actually a significant risk. Pretending that it’s not and refusing to take easier precautions up until it explodes and we have to go into total lockdown again is a great way to make it harder and not easier to go on living our lives.

      • Idaho potato says:

        Stay home.

    8. Star says:

      Take a walk in your neighborhood. Observe the crowded outdoor dining tables, the close proximity of maskless people. How long are they are sitting in one spot, close to each other, talking and laughing? Now imagine one, two, three people are contagious.

      With people laughing and having a good time, contagious droplets/air can spread great distances, up to 10 feet+, to adjacent tables….

      Our relaxed attitude toward outdoor dining, the false assumption that it is inherently safe (because it is allowed), will provide for an opportunistic increase in COVID infection. It is a numbers game.

      • Jay says:

        “With people laughing and having a good time, contagious droplets/air can spread great distances, up to 10 feet+, to adjacent tables….”

        I’ve seen no data that says that this true in real-world conditions (outdoors, normal conversations, etc.).

    9. df says:

      To me, looks like the test rate in UWS and similar affluent areas is twice that of the poorer zipcodes which have twice the positivity rate. If you take that into account, the rates of infection are quite similar, its just that we have time and money to go get tested when we are not sick.

      • Lol says:

        Ya, I’m sure it’s all our money that’s letting us get free tests

      • Covid Jones says:

        Yes, exactly. The virus disproportionately hurts poor people — the people who live in the neighborhoods that have the lowest testing rates.

        …because they don’t have money to get tested. …because they don’t have health insurance.
        …because they don’t have jobs.
        …because they economy was set on fire, by a Governor who is catering to…

        well-off Karens who can afford to lock themselves inside and scold people for living.

      • UWSdr says:

        Lack of access to testing is a major problem affecting less affluent areas. The death rates in these areas compared to more affluent ones strongly suggests that the problem is worse there and is not ‘quite similar’.

    10. Shirley Ariker says:

      It’s impossible to see the data in 10025!

    11. Alan Oppenheim says:

      What about all the maskless or improperly masked food preparers in those food carts. The 2 women who prepare food in the cart at 70th and Amsterdam rarely wear masks. Also, those on Amsterdam between 70th and 71st as well are often unmasked.

    12. Kathleen says:

      I, too, am disturbed and angered by how often I see NYPD not wearing masks. What’s up with that?!

      And while not eating and drinking on the subway is not THE thing that is causing spikes in the virus, it is A thing. There is no ONE thing that’s facilitating the spread of this virus and we need to be doing everything possible to stop it. If there is one thing, one single most important thing IMHO it will be to begin to respect each other and care for more than one’s own immediate personal comfort. If we don’t all come together to fight this it will never go away, and while people who choose to pretend Covid-19 is just like the flu, no biggie, it’s not. It spreads more easily and quickly and is much more deadly.