With Ontario entering step two of reopening on June 30, malls will soon be allowed to welcome shoppers back. However, there are new rules in place to keep crowds to a minimum.

Capacity limits will be enforced, and several popular malls will have new resources for shoppers to plan their visit online ahead of time. Stores inside the mall will also have capacity limits to follow, which are set at 25% for non-essential stores and 50% for essential stores during step two.

Oxford Properties, which owns Yorkdale Mall, Square One, Scarborough Town Centre, Upper Canada Mall and Hillcrest, told Narcity in an email that indoor seating areas, benches and food court tables will be closed to comply with the province's regulations.

Unlike the last time malls reopened in Ontario, shoppers at these malls will not have to undergo a health screening before entering.*

Not all mall entrances will be open, and shoppers are encouraged to check the mall's website for details on designated entrances and real-time updates about capacity beforehand, so they know exactly what to expect.

Hanging out and congregating inside the mall is not permitted, according to provincial regulations, and Oxford Properties says their teams will be making sure that nobody's loitering in their shopping centres.

Many retailers will have their own line management systems, which will notify shoppers by text when it's their turn to enter. Curbside pickup with dedicated stalls will still be offered by many stores.

Outdoor patios are now open at GTA malls


Oxford Properties

With indoor food courts closed, outdoor patios are now open at Yorkdale, Square One and Scarborough Town Centre. The patios accommodate up to 100 people and will provide food and beverages from dozens of spots at the mall.

The outdoor spaces feature covered tents, umbrellas, greenery, and lighting. They're first-come, first-served, with hosts managing waitlists when you arrive. Oxford Properties confirmed to Narcity that Upper Canada Mall and Hillcrest will be getting their own patios in the coming weeks.

*This article has been updated.