Ordinance for outdoor dining

In this week’s St. Augustine Report, Former Mayor and Commissioner George Gardner is reporting that a proposed ordinance to allow outdoor dining on Aviles Street hinges on finding a funding source for the project.

A report by Chief Operations Officer John Regan stated that “outdoor dining would be an integral part of the redesign of Aviles Street”. On hearing Regan’s comments in their last meeting, the City Commission authorized preparation of a proposed outdoor dining ordinance for consideration.

The scope of the work to be completed would include widening the west-side sidewalk over existing parking spaces — which some feel need to be preserved.

Regan reported that he’s working with Trinity Episcopal Church to partner with the city on metering its Artillery Lane parking lot. This would alleviate some of the need for Aviles Street parking as well as produce some of the funding for the estimated $150,000-$175,000 project, if it’s approved.

One concern to be addressed by the commission will be whether or not the city can allow outdoor dining on Aviles Street — without upsetting restrictions on sidewalk activities elsewhere.

One argument for the ban on street entertainment along St. George Street was that it too heavily congested areas along the pedestrian street.

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