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In addition to our normal news coverage, What Now Atlanta is tracking ways Atlanta’s businesses are adapting to the novel coronavirus and the challenges it brings to brick-and-mortars.
The Varsity is set to reopen Friday, July 10, after temporarily closing Thursday when an employee tested positive for COVID-19, but the 92-year-old fast-food institution won’t be bringing its carhops back, for the time being, the Atlanta-Journal Constitution first reported.
“Because our area has seen an uptick in cases in recent weeks, as well as ever-changing protocols from local and state authorities, we did not feel it was prudent to continue curbside service at our Midtown location,” John Browne, vice president for the Varsity, said Thursday in a prepared statement. “The operational, logistical and technological issues associated with curbside ordering and delivery have made it difficult to serve our customers safely and efficiently while maintaining adequate social distance to protect our team members.”
In doing so, The Varsity will lay off its carhops—18 in total—and a date for bringing the drive-in element of the restaurant back is unknown. “As we have seen recently, regulations locally and statewide change frequently,” Browne told the AJC. “We can’t anticipate how our operations will be impacted in the future.”
As with other restaurants that have voluntarily closed when workers fell ill with the novel coronavirus, The Varsity will do a deep disinfecting and sanitization before reopening tomorrow.
[Editor’s note: The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is rapidly evolving as is its effect on Atlanta, and the City’s businesses and its residents. Click here for What Now Atlanta’s ongoing coverage of the crisis. For guidance and updates on the pandemic, please visit the C.D.C. website.]