The City of Kitchener has extended its patio program to support local bar and restaurant operators to at least January 1, 2021. Should the Province permit temporary patios beyond January 1, the City will also permit the continuation of patios. The now extended patio program allows bar and restaurant operators the opportunity to offer food services on temporary outdoor patios city-wide and expanded sidewalks patios downtown Kitchener. The extension of the program is aimed at continuing to support and offer bar and restaurant operators options amongst the challenges presented by the pandemic.
Earlier this year, the City of Kitchener launched the new patio program to make it faster and easier for bar and restaurant operators to obtain approval for new or expanded outdoor patios. Since the launch of the patio program over 60 local operators have extended or added temporary outdoor patios to their establishments. In line with the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) and regional public health guidelines and requirements, the City intends to allow bar and restaurant owners to operate patios as long as possible.
“This global pandemic has brought on so many new challenges for bar and restaurant owners. Extending the patio season, I hope will give owners options while staying within provincial and regional public health guidelines,” said Kitchener Mayor Berry Vrbanovic. “Heated outdoor patios this upcoming winter season, could be a great way to support local businesses while still following public health guidelines.”
City staff will be contacting bar and restaurant operators with temporary outdoor patios to provide details about the program extension and offer support and resources on operating into the fall and winter season. If operators choose to install temporary tents or heaters, they will need to follow all necessary building codes and fire requirements. Operators with patios on private property will also be responsible for keeping them accessible and clear of snow and ice.
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