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Richmond speeds up patio process

By Hannah Scott, Local Journalism Initiative reporter

Published 3:04 PDT, Wed May 27, 2020

Richmond city council is embracing restaurants and pubs re-opening with expanded service areas. The retrofit will allow for increased physical distancing.

Last week the province announced that the patio application process for restaurants and other food service establishments would be temporarily simplified and expedited. At Monday night’s Richmond City Council meeting, more local details and changes were discussed.

The city’s minimum on-site vehicle parking requirements will be temporarily suspended to make space for added outdoor seating. Mayor Malcolm Brodie said pedestrians will need to walk on roadways in some cases, which will be addressed by the city. 

Businesses can only have patio spaces on their own property or the sidewalk directly adjacent. If a tenant in a multi-tenant building wants to expand their patio space, the property owner must provide approval. Temporary patio spaces in Steveston will not require a Heritage Alteration Permit.

The city also agreed to provide a single pre-approval to the provincial liquor regulation branch. This means individual requests for expanded liquor licenses will not need to go through city approval.

So far, staff have received requests from four or five businesses seeking expanded patio space.

—With files from Lorraine Graves

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