Vancouver council to debate second year of pilot program for extended patio hours
Vancouver city council will consider a report this week that recommends allowing some patios to stay open later as part of the second year of a pilot program.
Vision Vancouver councillor Heather Deal said 46 out of the 316 large-patio operators in the city applied to take part in the program last year, which was launched late in the summer.
“They reported good results, and we’re not getting complaints, so we’re going to continue that pilot for another year, and hopefully we’ll get an expanded number of patios taking advantage of it, so that we can really test run it around the city before we make it a permanent change,” Deal told the Straight by phone.
If staff recommendations are approved this week, the extended restaurant patio hours will be in effect from April to October this year and will allow operators to stay open until midnight, an hour later than the current curfew of 11 p.m.
Deal said patio operators who haven’t received any complaints within the past 12 months will be eligible to apply to the pilot program. The later patio curfew would come with requirements, including no outdoor amplified music and responsibility for noise levels.
As part of the same staff report, city council will also consider a revised Vancouver street-vending by-law this week.
Changes recommended as part of the updated bylaw include restrictions to the city’s food-vending program. These include prohibiting the rental or sale of permits, and ensuring that stationary or roaming food vendors are located at least 100 metres from a similar brick-and-mortar business.
“We’ve been learning from the program as it grows and changes, and this year, we’ve seen evidence that the sub-leasing was a significant issue—bigger than we realized it was,” said Deal.
“This program was really intended for entrepreneurs, for small businesses, for start-ups,” she added.
“And we were running into situations where one person might have a whole bunch of the permits and be sub-leasing them out at prices significantly higher than the city was charging them, and that’s not what the program was intended for.”
The report will go before the city’s planning, transportation and environment committee this Wednesday (February 19).