FROM compulsory mask-wearing to pop-up cycle lanes and sanitising robots, the coronavirus pandemic has changed our cities in countless ways. Here are some images from 2020.
As lockdowns took hold, some of the world’s noisiest and most crowded cities became eerily quiet, including metropolises like New York – dubbed the “city that never sleeps”.
Public transport also emptied as governments encouraged people to stay home or find alternative ways to travel. City mayors pedestrianised roads and installed pop-up bike lanes.
As hospitals became overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients, people in cities across Europe came out on their balconies and doorsteps to applaud their health workers in daily or weekly displays of appreciation. Rainbows also appeared around the world as a symbol of support for key workers.
With the COVID-19 death toll soaring, some cities allocated special sections in cemeteries to bury victims of the pandemic.
Repeated lockdowns and falls in tourism hit the hospitality, retail and entertainment sectors particularly hard. Food courier companies proliferated across cities as people ate in.
As cities eased restrictions after the first lockdown, restaurants and other venues found creative ways to enforce social distancing. Open-air cinemas also became popular with some places introducing floating cinemas.
From public washstands that also clean your mobile phone to robots that deliver drinks to your table, technology has been employed in a multitude of ways to prevent the spread of coronavirus in cities.
The pandemic has also led to an explosion of street art in cities around the world.