The city of Frederick officially cleared the way for restaurants, breweries, wineries and other establishments to set up temporary outdoor seating in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, with the passage of two ordinances Thursday night.

The city's Board of Aldermen approved ordinances allowing the placement of temporary outdoor dining on both public and private property during a virtual meeting.

The city has created five options for outdoor dining: on city sidewalks; in city parks, alleys, and lots; street parking spaces; on closed streets; or on private property.

The on-street seating includes plans to close down Market Street between Patrick and Third streets on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays between 11 a.m. and 10 p.m., beginning June 12.

The city plans to maintain the options into the fall, and waive all associated permit fees.

A new permit portal is available at cityoffrederickmd.gov/popupdining.

The ordinances approved Thursday require businesses to present “a plan showing all pertinent features of the area affected, including the proposed location of the outdoor dining area, and the dimensions of any temporary structures.”

The ordinances will expire at the end of October, or the end of the state of emergency issued by Hogan, whichever comes first.

Alderwoman Donna Kuzemchak noted that the ordinances hadn't been brought before the aldermen for a workshop to review them.

The aldermen discussed a number of elements of the ordinances, including whether they should include list specific requirements, such as whether staff must wear masks while serving customers.

They decided that both ordinances should be left to be guided by whatever rules the then-current order from the governor specifies.

Follow Ryan Marshall on Twitter: @RMarshallFNP

Ryan Marshall is the transportation and growth and development reporter for the News-Post. He can be reached at rmarshall@newspost.com.

(3) comments

MFGA

Just how much is this "thinking outside the box", once again, by this administration costing the taxpayers of The City of Frederick? Who is going to set up the barricades for the restaurants and for closing down the street and remove them each evening for the three days of each weekend for free or is this costing the taxpayers once again? Who do you think is paying the costs for the special event that occurred today in downtown Frederick? Certainly not the protest organizers...special event organizers are responsible for the extra costs in manpower and cleanup associated with holding their events in The City of Frederick...why are the taxpayers footing the bill for this special event instead of those responsible for the idea?

corgikid

Thank you massars for allowing us sheeple to come outside and have some freedom. In the meantime, someone give Donna a coloring book and some crayons so she can have her own workshop.

Matt Sharkey

These are fantastic measures that will both ensure the health of our fellow residents as well as reinvigorate our local restaurants. Our city government has done an outstanding job of thinking outside the box here.

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