N.O. Welcomes More Parklets, Waives Fees for Outdoor Dining

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The new 'parklet' outside of the Pythian Market provides an additional 15 outdoor seats.

NEW ORLEANS — The City of New Orleans has extended its Parklet Pilot Program, which allows restaurants and bars to use on-street parking spaces in front of their restaurants and bars for additional seating. This provides additional safe dining spaces while the occupancy limits are reduced due to COVID-19 restrictions. The outdoor dining application fees for both sidewalk cafes and parklets have been waived until March 31, 2021.

“While we have light at the end of the tunnel, we know that our businesses in every corner of the city continue to struggle with COVID-related challenges,” said Jeffrey Schwartz, director, Office of Economic Development. “By creatively and safely utilizing public rights of way, the City’s Parklet Pilot Program offers most businesses in New Orleans the opportunity to have access to crucial outdoor space for their operations. Parklets also create safe spaces for physical distancing, and activate our streets and communities. We hope and expect that parklets will not only be a lifeline during the pandemic, but a permanent feature of our City’s streetscape. Mayor Cantrell and our partners are excited to see the groundswell of interest in the parklet program, and we will continue to find creative ways to support our business community,” 

Available to restaurants and bars citywide, more than two dozen businesses have applied to the pilot program, and parklets are popping up around the city. Under the extended Pilot period, parklets will include the placement of tables and chairs into the parking lane in the roadway. A permanent parklet program is being developed to continue after the pilot that will require ADA-compliant buildouts from the curb/sidewalk and will account for drainage and other design elements. The City will work to make the process from pilot to permanent program as seamless as possible for participants.

To stay up to date, visit outdoordiningnola.com.

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