The City recently implemented new outdoor dining permit regulations after a year-long review process that involved outreach with restaurateurs who currently hold outdoor dining permits and advocates from the City’s Disability Advisory Committee.
The new regulations are intended to keep the sidewalks as public spaces with full accessibility.
New regulations include: establishing a permitted outdoor dining period (April 1 to November 15), restricting outdoor dining to sidewalks of 8 feet or wider, and barrier requirements.
Also, existing regulations were elaborated with clear numerical dimensions for outdoor dinning installations and clarification on what outdoor dining components (such as awnings, platforms, bars…) are allowed and what would require a building permit.
The revised regulations are intended to resolve past conflicts regarding the use of the public right-of-way, including the need to maintain safe and direct public access through a site; issues with historic preservation and alterations to the exterior of buildings; and the desire to support outdoor dining as part of an active City.
The new regulations clarify what area of the sidewalk must be kept clear and under what circumstances restaurants can make permanent alterations as part of outdoor dining. They also provide restaurants with some options should they not be able to get outdoor dining to work under these conditions.