Across California, restaurants have taken over parking lots, sidewalks and streets for outdoor dining as the state has crawled back toward normalcy.
In some places, that has meant a couple of extra tables lined up along a curb. For other restaurants with more space nearby, it has meant setting up tents and more permanent barriers, like trellises or big planters, to add a little ambience to what had previously been unromantic patches of asphalt.
And across the state, diners, restaurant operators and city officials have all begun asking why they didn’t do this before.
State leaders have taken notice.
A bipartisan group of lawmakers introduced a bill that would pave the way for the temporary outdoor dining, alcohol sale and parklet regulations that are in place to become permanent. It passed the State Senate unanimously on Tuesday.
emergency guidance that said if a city allowed it, they could expand alcohol sales outside.
That’s been great, not just for bars or restaurants, but patrons like it. And it activates public spaces.
to make the outdoor dining program permanent.