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Coronavirus Update: NYC Streets Desolate As Non-Essential Businesses Prepare To Close

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Life has been getting gradually more difficult as we deal with the coronavirus crisis, and New Yorkers are trying to adjust.

All non-essential stores and businesses in the city and state will have to close at 8 p.m. Sunday, and on Saturday night, the streets of New York City were desolate.

Already on the Upper West Side, a number of stores were noticeably shut down.

"Unbelievable. Stressful. Frightening," Upper West Side resident Marjie Fagan said.

"It's a ghost town out here," another person said.


Anna Clark's Nexa Pilates Studio was among those already shut down, the economics too brutal to bear.

"We had 30 employees that are all out of work right now. They all worked on an hourly basis. So our income, which was hovering around breaking even 'cause we're a new business, is now down zero, and we don't know when we're gonna open up again," Clark told CBS2's Scott Rapoport.

The impending lockdown on New York will only further put a crimp on cabs and other professional driving businesses, says Uber driver Jafar. He says there's no money to be made.

"It's affecting me a lot. You know, it's like I can't provide for the family like usual right now," he said.

At Zabar's Grocery Store, a business that will not be closing Sunday night, business was busy nonetheless with people stocking up for the long haul.

"Lots of people are spending much, much more money. I'm seeing shopping carts, three, four, five baskets. Normally people are taking one," general manager Scott Goldshine said.

CORONAVIRUS: NY Health Dept. | NY Call 1-(888)-364-3065 | NYC Health Dept. | NYC Call 311, Text COVID to 692692 | NJ Health Dept. | NJ Call 1-(800)-222-1222 or 211, Text NJCOVID to 898211 | CT Health Dept. | CT Call 211

With non-essential workers across the state being told to stay at home, some New Yorkers say they're just trying to make the best of it.

"We're basically living like 'Little House on the Prairie,'" Betty Jane Jacobs said. "We're making soups. We're eating leftovers. We're staying in the house."

New Yorkers are trying to get used to the new normal.

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