Mayor de Blasio and First Lady Chirlane McCray celebrate the launch of Phase 2 reopening by eating dinner at Melba’s in Harlem; Photo by Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office on Flickr
Restaurants and bars officially reopened for outdoor dining this week as part of New York City’s phase two of reopening. Since Monday, more than 5,650 restaurants have applied, self-certified, and opened their sidewalk, patios, and adjacent parking spots to diners. To make it easier to find which establishments are open for al fresco dining in your neighborhood, the Department of Transportation on Friday released a dashboard and an interactive map that let New Yorkers search for open restaurants by borough and ZIP code.
Courtesy of DOT
The city’s “Open Restaurants” program allows restaurants to set up sidewalk seating and curb lane seating, convert adjacent parking spots into seating, utilize plaza seating through Business Improvement Districts, and, starting next month, add seating areas on streets currently closed to cars.
DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg also announced on Friday that an expansion of outdoor dining on open streets will begin July 4 weekend, with between 10 and 20 open streets available for the program. The applications for city approval will open on Monday, June 29 through BID and community-based organizations. The hours for restaurants operating in open streets will be Friday from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 12 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Part of the program also involves a streamlined permitting process to make it easy for restaurants to open to customers quickly. Acknowledging that the pandemic has hit the industry hard, Mayor Bill de Blasio said this week the city’s main goal is to “make this a simple, fast, easy process” for restaurant owners.
The Open Restaurants dashboard lets New Yorkers search for businesses by moving the map to a specific area, or by borough and ZIP code. It lists what type of seating the restaurant is offering (roadway, sidewalk, or both) and whether alcohol service is available.
According to the city, more than 2,800 restaurants in Manhattan have reopened for outdoor dining, with 1,400 and 1,100 restaurants open in Brooklyn and Queens, respectively, as of Friday. But only a little over 260 have reopened in the Bronx and 112 on Staten Island.
Under state and city guidelines, outdoor tables must be spaced six feet apart, staff must wear face coverings, and customers must also wear face coverings when not seated. All outdoor dining must also close by 11 p.m. Indoor dining is expected to resume at 50 percent capacity in NYC on July 6 as part of the third phase of reopening.
Explore the Open Restaurants map here.
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