By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Mar 16, 2020 at 3:59 PM

The coronavirus pandemic has changed our everyday life, but it doesn't need to change who we are. So, in addition to our ongoing coverage of the coronavirus, OnMilwaukee will continue to report on cool, fun, inspiring and strange stories from our city and beyond. Stay safe, stay healthy, stay informed and stay joyful. We're all in this together. #InThisTogetherMKE

The Hop streetcar is still operating Downtown and on Monday issued a statement about why it's still running, what staff is doing to help mitigate the risk of virus transmission and what riders can do, too.

Here is the statement in full:

The Hop continues to monitor the situation surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak carefully and we are working closely with City, State and Federal officials to ensure we employ best practices regarding the cleaning of our vehicles and the safety of our staff and riders. We are increasing the frequency of our cleanings, employing cleaning agents and disinfectants recommended by the CDC, and instituting new policies to maintain the cleanliness of the vehicles throughout the day.

As of now, we will continue to maintain our usual levels of service. We strongly support all City and State efforts to limit the spread of the virus through social distancing and urge the public to heed these warnings and refrain from all non-essential travel. That said, we recognize that many in our community still have critical needs outside of their homes and rely on public transit to meet those needs. For those who continue to rely upon our service, we ask that you join the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic by being extra vigilant in exercising recommended hygiene practices, including regular and thorough hand washing, avoiding touching your eyes, nose or mouth, and covering coughs and sneezes with either a tissue or your elbow. On board the streetcar, passengers should leave additional space between themselves and others, and utilize the seats whenever possible as opposed to holding the poles or hand straps. Most importantly, if you are exhibiting any symptoms or feel ill, please stay at home.

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.