Coronavirus: New York City a ghost town amid COVID-19 pandemic

New York City has been reduced to an eerie ghost town as the metropolis grapples with a devastating outbreak of COVID-19, the deserted streets a far cry from the 'City that Never Sleeps'.

To illustrate the extent of COVID-19's impact, Kiwi Brian Smith has captured New York's empty roads, deserted subway stations and the smattering of vehicles speeding along the usually bumper-to-bumper streets.  

Smith is planning to return to New Zealand next week.

On Wednesday, New York's governor Andrew Cuomo estimated there are "tens of thousands" of COVID-19 cases across the state, suggesting the outbreak is far more widespread than the official numbers suggest. 

New Yorkers are urged to "stay at home as much as possible" and to maintain a distance of six feet from others while in public spaces, according to the New York State health department.

On Thursday, Cuomo signed an executive order authorising businesses that rely on in-office staff to decrease their in-office workforce by 75 percent. A bill has also been signed guaranteeing job protection and pay for quarantined New Yorkers.

Mortgage borrowers impacted by COVID-19 in New York state will receive a 90-day mortgage relief period. 

All New York schools have been closed for two weeks as of March 18, as well as casinos, gyms, theatres, bars and restaurants. 

Watch the video above.