outdoor dining

City Living, Policy, Restaurants

Maiden Korea, 316 5th Avenue; Courtesy of Alfresco NYC

The New York City Council on Thursday approved the Open Restaurants zoning text amendment to NYC’s Zoning Resolution, an important step in the path to making permanent outdoor dining a part of city life. The zoning amendment expands the areas where outdoor dining can be considered to all NYC neighborhoods. The amendment joins proposed legislative changes that would cut red tape for restaurant owners.

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Policy, Restaurants

Image courtesy of Bubby’s

New York City Council Member Keith Powers last week introduced legislation that would allow the ongoing use of propane heaters for outdoor restaurant dining. The heaters, given the green light last year but banned again in October, helped restaurants stay afloat last winter by keeping diners cozy at Covid-safe outdoor tables.

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City Living, Restaurants

Maiden Korea, 316 5th Avenue; Courtesy of Alfresco NYC

Over 11,500 restaurants across New York City currently participate in the city’s outdoor dining program, which launched last summer to help businesses stay afloat during the coronavirus pandemic. On Monday, seven of them were recognized for being the best examples of outdoor dining setups across the boroughs as part of the first-ever Alfresco Awards. The program, created by a group of local nonprofits, also acknowledged the city’s best Open Streets, an initiative that closes streets to cars for pedestrian use.

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Events, Financial District, Restaurants

Photo of a past dinner by Lizzie Munro @lizziemunro

When outdoor dining took on a new life last summer, many restaurant and hospitality companies had to get creative. But Resident, a startup that hosts dinners on balconies and rooftops of luxury apartments, was already ahead of the game. This past fall, they launched a socially distant supper club on the balcony of the Financial District’s landmarked Broad Exchange Building, including a rotating chef residency with newcomers who have experience at Michelin-starred restaurants. The supper club is now back, featuring a Venezuelan-inspired tasting menu from Chef Luis Herrera, redefined soul food from Chef Sakari Smithwick, a Filipino-inspired meal from Chef Harold Villarosa, and much more.

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City Living, Policy

Photo looking south on open West End Avenue, taken by 6sqft on 5.16.20

The popular program that closed streets to cars for pedestrian use will be made permanent under legislation passed by the New York City Council on Thursday. The “Open Streets” initiative first launched last spring as a way to make social distancing easier and to reduce crowds at parks during the height of the coronavirus pandemic in the city. The bill, sponsored by Council Member Carlina Rivera, would provide some funding and resources to the largely volunteer-led program while ensuring the open streets are fairly allocated among communities.

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Bronx, City Living

Photo courtesy of the Belmont Business Improvement District

One of New York City’s most famous foodie destinations will once again transform into an outdoor dining hot spot this spring. Starting April 30, “Piazza di Belmont” returns to the Bronx’s Little Italy neighborhood, with several restaurants setting up al fresco seating along historic Arthur Avenue. Developed by the Belmont Business Improvement District, the European-style experience first debuted last summer as part of the city’s “Open Restaurants” program.

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Harlem, Restaurants

Parklet designed by Brandt:Haferd for The Row and Alibi Lounge. All photos by New Kingston Media

The stately brick homes lining West 138th and 139th Streets between Adam Clayton Powell Jr. and Frederick Douglass Boulevards are known as Strivers’ Row. The historic Harlem enclave was once home to prominent, wealthy African-American performers, artists, and professionals. More than 100 years later, the neighborhood is once again leading the community with a new outdoor dining and recreation corridor that supports Black-owned businesses. Called the Renaissance Pavilion at Strivers’ Row, the winterized outdoor setup will help local businesses and restaurants serve customers safely through April of next year.

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Policy, Restaurants

Photo by Eden, Janine and Jim on Flickr

Outdoor dining on New York City streets will be suspended Wednesday afternoon ahead of an impending snowstorm, the city’s Department of Sanitation announced. The “Snow Alert” issued by the DSNY says “roadway dining” must end by 2 p.m. and be shut down for the duration of the alert. The latest forecast from the National Weather Service predicts between 8 and 14 inches of snow in the city starting late afternoon on Wednesday.

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Policy, Restaurants

Photo by Eden, Janine and Jim on Flickr

The New York City Council on Thursday voted to make outdoor dining permanent and year-round and lifted the ban on portable propane heaters. The legislation approved by the Council extends the city’s current Open Restaurants program, in which more than 10,500 restaurants have enrolled since June, until September 30, 2021, and requires it to be replaced with a permanent program. Under the program, restaurants will also be able to use portable propane heaters, which were previously banned.

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Policy, Restaurants

NYC outdoor dining will be year-round and permanent

By Devin Gannon, Fri, September 25, 2020

St. Marks Place outdoor dining; Photo by Eden, Janine and Jim on Flickr

Outdoor dining will be a permanent, year-round feature for New York City restaurants, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Friday. The city’s popular “Open Restaurants” program, which launched in June and allows restaurants to set up outdoor seating on sidewalks, patios, and on some streets closed to cars on weekends, was set to expire on October 31. During his weekly appearance on WNYC’s The Brian Lehrer Show, de Blasio said the program will be “part of the life of the city for years to come.” The “Open Streets: Restaurants” program, which has closed roughly 87 streets to traffic for car-free dining on weekends, will also be made permanent, the mayor said.

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