In June 2020, new bylaws were adopted to permit and regulate the construction and operation of sidewalk patios and parklets on public lands in the City. Download the staff report to learn more.
A sidewalk patio is an outdoor patio on a sidewalk and/or within designated parking spaces on a highway that provides an existing business outdoor space for their activities. It is intended to be an accessible, barrier-free environment located directly fronting the business. The business would have exclusive use of this space to serve their patrons, but a certain amount of space must be maintained free of obstruction along sidewalks.
A parklet is an outdoor gathering area on a sidewalk, a designated parking space, or on publicly owned lands that is intended for the public to use free of charge. A parklet can be established by anyone – a business, society, or individual. Like the sidewalk patio, parklets are intended to be accessible, barrier-free environments that do not impede sidewalk access.
Please check the bylaw requirements to see if you need a sidewalk patio or parklet permit. Generally permits are valid from May 1 to October 31 of a given year, but the permit can be extended in certain situations.
Some activities are exempt from needing a permit:
the tables and chairs are located on the sidewalk immediately adjoining the business and wholly located within 0.8m of the frontage on which the business is located;
there are no more than 3 tables and six chairs;
the sidewalk is unimpeded at a minimum width of 1.5 metres for the entire length of the sidewalk fronting the business once the chairs and tables have been placed;
the tables and chairs are removed from the sidewalk at the close of business each day;
there are no structures within the 1.5 metres unimpeded sidewalk area; and,
proof of comprehensive general liability insurance in an amount not less than $2 million and to the satisfaction of the City is provided.
Planning Services Department
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