Main page content begins here

On December 8, 2020, the Government of Alberta announced new mandatory public health measures for businesses to help curb the spread of COVID-19.

Effective December 13, 2020, all restaurants, pubs, bars, lounges and cafes must close to in-person service. This includes all temporary outdoor patios and sidewalk cafes. Take out, curbside pickup and delivery services are allowed.

Outdoor retail expansions may continue provided they follow the Province’s requirement to reduce customer capacity to 15% of fire code occupancy.

Updated January 8, 2021 

On December 8, 2020 the Government of Alberta announced new mandatory public health measures for businesses to help curb the rapid spread of COVID-19. For details, visit COVID-19 info for Albertans.

Information on this page is updated as the situation continues to evolve and new information becomes available. For general City of Edmonton COVID-19 information, visit edmonton.ca/COVID-19

Edmonton’s Economic Recovery Program

This program builds on the City’s existing work to support businesses and has five tools that will allow us to use the catalyst funding most effectively to help our local business community relaunch and recover.

Restrictions on Business

Restrictions for Edmonton Businesses - Government of Alberta

Unless otherwise stated, the following mandatory restrictions are in effect in Edmonton as of December 13 and will be in place until at least January 21, 2021. 
For more details and updates, visit the Alberta COVID-19 Mandatory Public Health Measures.

Work from Home

Working from home is mandatory unless the employer requires a physical presence for operational effectiveness.

Business and Service Restrictions

Effective December 13, 2020, some businesses will be required to close, reduce capacity or limit their in-person access. All previous restrictions from November 27 remain in place until the new restrictions come into effect.

Retail

Retail services must reduce customer capacity to 15% of fire code occupancy or a minimum of 5 customers:

  • Curbside pick up, delivery and online services are encouraged
  • Shop alone if possible or only with the people you live with
  • Shopping mall:
    • Capacity limits of 15% include common areas and individual stores
    • Food courts open for grab and go only

Retail services include:

  • Retail businesses operating within a shopping centre or mall
  • Shopping centres and malls
  • Pet supply stores
  • Grocery stores
  • Pharmacies
  • Clothing stores
  • Computer and technology stores
  • Hardware
  • Automotive
  • Sporting goods
  • Liquor and cannabis
  • Gift shops
  • Markets
Restaurants, bars, pubs, lounges and cafes
  • All restaurants, pubs, bars, lounges and cafes are closed to in-person service
  • Take out, curbside pickup and delivery services are allowed
Entertainment and Recreation Facilities

All entertainment businesses and entities must close, including:

  • Casinos, bingo halls, gaming centres
  • Racing centres, horse tracks, raceways
  • Bowling alleys, pool halls
  • Legions and private clubs (nightclubs must remain closed)
  • Art galleries, libraries and museums
  • Science and interpretive centres
  • Amusement and water parks
  • Children’s play centres and indoor playgrounds
  • Theatres, auditoria and concert halls
  • Banquet halls, conference centres and trade shows

All indoor recreation facilities must close, including:

  • Gyms and studios
  • Fitness and recreation centres
  • Spas, pools, indoor rinks and arenas
  • Day and overnight camps
  • Community halls and centres

Outdoor recreation is permitted, but facilities with indoor spaces except for washrooms will be closed.

Personal and Wellness Services

All personal and wellness services must close.

Personal services include:

  • Esthetics, manicure, pedicure, body waxing, make-up
  • Body, nose and ear piercing, and tattoos
  • Artificial tanning and spray tanning
  • Facial, eyebrow and eyelash treatments
  • Cosmetic skin and body treatments
  • Laser hair and tattoo removal
  • Hairstyling and barbering

Wellness services include:

  • Massage therapy
  • Floatation tanks
  • Reflexology
  • Colonic irrigation
Health, Social and Professional Services

Regulated health services can remain open by appointment only as long as public health orders and sector guidance is followed. Appointments should be limited to one-on-one services.

  • Physicians, dentists
  • Physical therapists
  • Optometrists
  • Chiropractors
  • Hearing aid practitioners
  • Acupuncturists
  • Naturopaths

Professional services can remain open by appointment only:

  • Lawyers
  • Mediators
  • Accountants
  • Photographers

Social services can remain open for in-person services including:

  • Social, protective or emergency services
  • Shelters for vulnerable persons
  • Not-for-profit community kitchens, religious kitchens and soup kitchens

Home-based businesses should follow the restrictions for the type of service they provide.

Hotels, Motels, Hunting & Fishing Lodges

Hotels, motels, hunting and fishing lodges may remain open but must follow restrictions:

  • No spa, pool or gym access
  • No in-person dining (room service only)
Performance Activities:

Performance activities include dancing, singing, theatre and playing wind instruments.

Outdoor settings

  • Rehearsals and practices are permitted up to a maximum of 10 participants. Physical distancing and other relevant guidelines must be followed.
  • Performances with audiences are not permitted.

Indoor settings

  • No group performances in indoor settings are permitted
  • Rehearsals, practices and lessons involving 2 or more are not permitted

Lessons

  • 1-to-1 in-person lessons are permitted
  • Virtual lessons are strongly encouraged where possible

School settings

  • Physical Education, band and drama classes are permitted to continue
  • Assemblies, performances, concerts, and inter-school games, activities and competitions are not permitted

Places of worship

  • Indoor group performance activities conducted in a place of worship, such as choir singing and playing music, are permitted provided these are normal activities conducted as part of worship practices and not for the purpose of entertainment
Sport and Physical Activities

Group physical activities, including team sports, fitness classes and training sessions, are prohibited or restricted across Alberta.

  • Outdoor group physical activity, including team sports, must be limited to 10 people or fewer
    • Members of different households must maintain 2 metre distancing at all times
  • Indoor group physical activities are prohibited unless
    • The group only involves members of the same household
    • The activity involves students at a school or post-secondary institution as part of an education program
    • The activity involves students at a post-secondary institution
  • One-to-one indoor training, such as training with a fitness trainer or coach, is not permitted

For more details, visit the Alberta COVID-19 Mandatory Public Health Measures 

Vehicle for Hire - City of Edmonton
Vehicle for Hire Service Restrictions

There are restrictions for all taxis, limousines, private transportation providers, shuttle service providers, and all ride sharing services such as Uber and Tapp.

These include: limits to the number of passengers in a vehicle, enhanced cleaning practices, and guidelines around what to do in the event of a potential exposure. For details, visit edmonton.ca/COVID-19 and read the news release.

Dispatch and Vehicle Licence Fee Reductions

On October 5, 2020, City Council approved a 100% reduction in 2020 dispatch and vehicle licence fees for limousines and a 50% reduction in these fees for all other vehicles for hire.

The fee reductions will be applied when licensees renew their dispatch and vehicle licences or apply for a new licence. For licensees who have already paid their 2020 fees, a credit will be applied to their 2021 fees. These fee reductions are one way the City is helping to relieve concerns about financial strain raised by the industry due to COVID-19.

Food Truck Operations - City of Edmonton

The City is continuing to issue permits for food truck operators in alignment with provincial requirements to ensure public health and safety, including the following:

  • No seating or consumption areas
  • No self-serve condiments
  • Appropriate physical distancing measures for lineups and ordering
  • Maintaining distance between food trucks to avoid congestion
  • Disinfecting measures in line with AHS recommendations
Reporting Physical Distancing & Health Order Violation Concerns

The City will support the new restrictions announced by the province by continuing to activate our enforcement teams.

Through close coordination with Alberta Health Services (AHS) and Edmonton Police Service (EPS), teams of Peace Officers will work 7 days a week to support Face Covering bylaw enforcement and Public Health Order enforcement. While enforcement has occurred throughout the pandemic, the City will now concentrate our efforts on public spaces, gatherings and businesses. 

For complaints on face coverings, vehicle-for-hire services, outdoor spaces, playgrounds and dog parks, use the City of Edmonton general complaint form. For complaints on self-isolation restrictions, mass gatherings, workplaces or businesses not complying with closures please visit the AHS Complaints form.

For physical distancing concerns, use the City of Edmonton physical distancing form. NOTE: This form is only for analyzing changing trends, not for enforcement. 

Temporary Mandatory Face Coverings
Provincial Masking Requirements

Effective December 8, 2020, the Province’s mandatory indoor public masking requirement (Order 41-2020) and (Order 38-2020) has been extended provincewide.

Masks are mandatory in all:

  • Indoor public places
  • Places of worship
  • Indoor workplaces and facilities outside the home, except:
    • When working alone in an office or a safely distanced cubicle or a barrier is in place
    • Rental accommodations used solely for the purposes of a private residence
    • Farm operations (exempt)

This workplace requirement:

  • Applies to all employees, customers, visitors, delivery personnel and contractors
  • Includes any location where employees are present in-person
  • Includes all workplace locations where masks won’t pose a safety risk
  • Does not change current student mask requirements in schools
Temporary Mandatory Face Coverings Bylaw

The Province’s mask requirements align with the City’s Temporary Mandatory Face Coverings Bylaw 19408, which came into effect on August 1, 2020 and has been extended until December 31, 2021. 

This bylaw makes wearing a mask or face covering mandatory in all indoor public spaces and public vehicles. This means that if you are someone who operates a public-facing business or public facility, anyone who enters your business and your staff when in those spaces (unless separated by a barrier or working alone), must wear a mask or face covering. Masks are also required on transit, in transit centres and LRT platforms, as well as when riding in a vehicle for hire.

The City has prepared information to assist you in implementing this new bylaw. See our mask information for the public or mask information for businesses.

City Council can vote to repeal the bylaw at any time should conditions warrant that action.

Edmonton’s Relaunch, Recovery and Reimagine Plan

Edmonton's Reimagine Plan

The City has released the Reimagine plan that looks at ways to continue building a healthy, prosperous Edmonton while working to balance the budget during these unprecedented times. The Reimagine recommendations are the basis of City Administration’s corporate work plan and will better position Edmonton to recover from the triple threat of health challenges of a pandemic, the economic contraction it has generated and the oil price plunge.  

The plan aims to ensure that the City moves forward into the future in a financially responsible manner while dealing with the effects of COVID-19. You can read the related news release for more information about the plan.

One-on-One Support for Edmonton Businesses

Do you have questions about the City of Edmonton’s permitting and licensing processes or support available to you? Email businessinfo@edmonton.ca and we'll do our very best to help. 

Economic Recovery Grant Program

The Economic Recovery Grant has been created to support the immediate needs and recovery efforts for Edmonton’s businesses impacted by COVID-19. Businesses and organizations can apply anytime. Applications are reviewed weekly.

Details about eligibility, application criteria and how to apply are available at edmonton.ca/businessgrants

Business Licence Fee Reduction

To help support businesses experiencing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 situation, the City is offering a 50 per cent business licence fee reduction upon request for businesses that renew or apply for a new business licence between June 1 and December 31, 2020. To request the fee reduction, please renew or apply for your new licence by calling 780-442-5311 or emailing businesslicenceapplications@edmonton.ca

Temporary Outdoor Patios, Sidewalk Cafes and Retail Expansions - City of Edmonton

On December 8, 2020, the Government of Alberta announced new mandatory public health measures for businesses to help curb the spread of COVID-19.

Effective December 13, 2020, all restaurants, pubs, bars, lounges and cafes must close to in-person service. This includes all temporary outdoor patios and sidewalk cafes. Take out, curbside pickup and delivery services are allowed.

Outdoor retail expansions may continue provided they follow the Province’s requirement to reduce customer capacity to 15% of fire code occupancy.

Permit and Licensing Improvement Project

The City is committed to ongoing process improvement and red tape reduction to support businesses during the relaunch and recovery phases. The Permit and Licensing Improvement project is a longer term project aimed at improving services for homeowners and contractors doing renovations as well as businesses moving into a new space or opening a new business. For details, visit edmonton.ca/permitimprovements

Safety and Social Disorder

Needle Safety

The Capital City Cleanup program with the City of Edmonton is responsible for safe needle collection and disposal from public property. If you see a needle, call 311 or use the 311 app.
For more information about this program and needle debris, visit our Safe Needle Disposal webpage.

Encampment Response during COVID-19

The City schedules closures and clean-ups of encampments on public land. Visit our edmonton.ca/homelessness page for more information. To learn more or report an encampment, visit edmonton.ca/homelessness

Help for Vulnerable Edmontonians in Extreme Weather

Caring for our city’s most vulnerable becomes especially critical in extreme weather conditions. The City, Homeward Trust and community partners work together to determine when to enact the City’s extreme weather protocol. Find out more.

Social Disorder

Social disorder associated with homelessness - like litter, needle debris or disruptive behaviour - is a symptom of a lack of adequate housing and support. Housing is the solution. Find out more at edmonton.ca/homelessness

Service Changes for Businesses

Development, Licence & Construction Service Changes

Visit COVID-19 related service adjustments for information about development, permit, licencing, construction and inspection service changes. We’re working hard to maintain as many services as possible so you can still get the things you need. 

In-Person Service Changes

The following locations with in-person City services are closed to protect everyone’s health and safety. Most locations will still offer services via phone, email or mail:

The following service counters will be open for services by appointment only:

Visit edmonton.ca/servicechanges for details.

Transit Changes

Regular ETS service resumed on August 30, 2020. Customers are encouraged to travel during off-peak hours. They should wear a mask, keep a safe physical distance from other customers and stay home if they have any cold or flu symptoms. For details, visit Edmonton Transit Service.

Financial Assistance

Edmonton Economic Recovery Grant

The Edmonton Economic Recovery Grant is available to help Edmonton businesses recover from COVID-19. Find out more or apply today.

BIA Tax Levy Payment Deferral

Business Improvement Area members who cannot pay their BIA tax levy payments due to COVID-19, can delay their payments until August 31, 2020, with no late penalties. Those who are able to pay are encouraged to do so to help keep the City of Edmonton running during these challenging times. Partial payments are also encouraged. More information will be provided directly to BIAs and BIA members.

City-owned Property Rent Forbearance

For tenants in a building/facility closed by the City or those located in city-owned buildings that remain open, the City will not issue agreement default notices in April 2020 and will not enforce the payment of rent for three months. More information will be provided directly to tenants.

Commercial Rent Subsidy and Emergency Wage Subsidy - Government of Canada

On November 20, 2020 the Prime Minister announced that the Federal Government passed Bill C9. This means that a new commercial rent subsidy for businesses is being put in place and applications will open Monday, November 23, 2020. Bill C9 also extends the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) through to June 2021. Visit the Government of Canada website for details.

Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant - Government of Alberta

To support Alberta’s small businesses as they adapt to the realities of the ongoing public health crisis, the Alberta government is expanding and increasing the Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant. With a new lower threshold and increased grant amount, up to 15,000 more businesses may be eligible for funding.

In November, the government announced that Alberta businesses impacted by recent public health orders were eligible to apply for a second payment through the program. This second payment will now be 15% of pre-pandemic monthly revenues up to a maximum of $15,000 – for a total of $20,000 in potential funding available for each business, up from the original $5,000.

This second payment is available to businesses operating in areas on the provincial watch list where new health restrictions have been implemented. Applications for the second payment in areas under enhanced measures will open this month.

Additionally, the program is now expanding to include job creators who have experienced a 30% revenue loss due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This lowers the threshold from the existing requirement of 40% revenue loss. The 30% threshold will be available to impacted businesses retroactive to March.

For more information, visit the Government of Alberta’s relaunch grant program webpage.

Community Supports for Business

List of PPE Suppliers

The City of Edmonton has developed this list of suppliers for local businesses that may need personal protective equipment (PPE).

List of PPE Suppliers

Community Supports for Business

We are working closely with our partners throughout the city to best serve Edmontonians while taking steps to protect people and places from risks associated with the COVID-19 virus. Check in with our partners for the most up-to-date and detailed information about their service and the actions they are taking.

Government of Alberta Support for Businesses

The Government of Alberta provides COVID-19 related information and guidance on their website. 

Alberta Biz Connect provides workplace guidance and supports to help businesses and non-profits affected by COVID-19 begin to reopen and resume operations safely.

COVID-19 info for Albertans provides actions to protect Albertans and prevent the spread of novel coronavirus.

Economic support and recovery provides short, medium and long-term sector specific actions to support Albertans and the economy during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.

We also recommend visiting the Government of Alberta news page often for current announcements on business and sector related programs and services.

Government of Canada Support for Businesses

The Government of Canada provides COVID-19 related information and guidance on their website.

Financial and economic support for businesses provides information about access to financial supports and guidance for businesses 

End of page content. Please choose between the following five options:

Back to main menu Back to current page menu and content View current page breadcrumb Back to site search Continue to page footer content