Sidewalk patios in Vernon can now serve alcohol.
The City of Vernon has updated its bylaws to allow liquor service on sidewalk patios following a request from the soon-to-be-opened Naked Pig BBQ and Smokehouse.
In April, the restaurant owned by Marten Brewing Company Ltd., requested that Council change their Sidewalk and Boulevard Use Permit Policy, which outlines the application process and criteria for sidewalk patios, sidewalks displays and mobile vending.
Liquor service on sidewalk patios was prohibited in the policy, which has been in place since 2005.
After consultations with the Downtown Vernon Association, changes to the policy were drafted.
On Monday, Council supported changes and amended the Policy to allow the provision of liquor service on sidewalk patios.
They also included patio design criteria, hours of operations and fee changes to cover administration and lease rates.
The Liquor Control and Licensing Branch of BC approvals are also required for liquor patio service.
The City Centre Neighbourhood Plan supports the policy changes in an effort to foster an attractive, lively, vibrant downtown.
More sidewalk patios can help foster greater economic activity and a positive downtown atmosphere.
"While well-designed sidewalk patios can benefit business owners economically by expanding seating capacity and attract customers, patrons get to benefit from sitting outdoors to take full advantage of the region's climate," said Tanya Laing Gahr, the city's communications co-ordinator.
Patios also provide opportunities for people to use the sidewalks in different ways and usually for longer time periods. Active streets bustling with people enhance the sidewalk experience, increase safety and are visually interesting for passersby.
Businesses interested in developing a sidewalk patio or display area are encouraged to contact the City of Vernon Bylaw Division at 250-550-3505 or email [email protected]