Likely to no one’s surprise, the COVID-19 dominated our list of the most-read stories on Evanston Now for March. With the site drawing nearly three times its typical monthly traffic, the pandemic was top of mind for everybody.

Here’s a rundown of the top 10 stories for the month:

  1. Chicago orders ‘shelter-in-place’ — not Evanston — March 19 — The City of Chicago issued a “shelter-in-place” order for anyone showing COVID-19 symptoms this noon, but Evanston officials so far have declined to take that step.
  2. Evanston looks like COVID-19 hotspot, but is it? — March 21 — The share of Evanston residents who’ve been reported to have a positive test for the COVID-19 virus is more than five times the statewide average — but it’s impossible to be sure what that disparity actually means.
  3. Study forecasts COVID-19 peak here in mid-April — March 29 — Researchers at the University of Washington project that the peak demand for hospital resources in Illinois during the COVID-19 pandemic will arrive on April 16 and that 91 people will die that day.
  4. Five confirmed COVID-19 cases in Evanston — March 17 — Evanston Mayor Steve Hagerty announced this evening that the city now has five confirmed cases of the COVID-19 coronavirus.
  5. Mayor reports 1st COVID-19 death of an Evanston resident — March 23 — Evanston Mayor Steve Hagerty this evening reported that an Evanston man who lived in one of the city’s retirement communities has become the first resident to die from the COVID-19 coronavirus.
  6. City clerk ordered evicted from apartment — March 6 — Cook County Circuit Court records show that Evanston City Clerk Devon Reid is being evicted from his apartment at 429 Custer Ave. for nonpayment of rent.
  7. COVID-19 case count remains high here — March 23 — Evanston’s rate of confirmed COVID-19 cases remains substantially higher than the rate in the City of Chicago or the State of Illinois as a whole, but latest numbers suggest the gap may be diminishing.
  8. When things are supposed to get back to normal — March 29 — Assuming the governor’s stay-at-home order and other steps to contain the COVID-19 pandemic worked really well, what’s the current schedule for returning life to normal in Evanston?
  9. Six new COVID-19 cases in Evanston — March 26 — The number of COVID-19 cases grew by six today in Evanston to 55, while the total number of confirmed cases across Illinois rose by 673 to 2,538.
  10. 21 COVID-19 cases in Evanston, ‘shelter-in-place- ordered — March 20 — Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced a statewide shelter-in-place order today as Evanston city officials announced that the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the city rose from 14 to 21.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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