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Seasonal patios allowed on sidewalks

bean-outdoor-patioFollowing a pilot project last year, County Council has passed a bylaw to allow seasonal patios set up on downtown sidewalks.The temporary patios can be in place this year as early as May 1 and stay until Oct. 15.

“We are pleased to offer local businesses the option of installing a seasonal sidewalk patio,” says Mayor Peter Mertens. “The patio project provides both residents and visitors the opportunity to further enjoy the County’s historic streetscapes during the summer months.”

Offered as a pilot project in 2013, the Bean Counter Café was the first local business to have a sidewalk patio.
“Our customers have been looking forward to the return of the patio” says Debbie Tremblay, owner. “We have received nothing but positive feedback regarding last year’s patio setup. Hopefully other businesses participate this year – it is a great opportunity.”

The program was a recommended initiative of the Community Development Department and was designed to encourage pedestrian traffic to retail business areas, contribute to the ambiance of the downtown core, and provide restaurants with additional capacity to generate revenue and enhance visibility.

Municipal guidelines govern the health and safety, design, materials, accessibility requirements and appearance of the patio. Associated costs of patio installation such as construction and permits are the responsibility of the business owner.

Filed Under: Local News

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  1. Marnie says:

    More thought should be given to perking up the downtown. The Christmas decorations were pathetic this year and those faded banners hanging limply from the light standards are no addition.Forget patios and focus on making Main Street more attractive to visitors and local residents alike.

  2. Paul says:

    They use to close Main St from Master feed to the top of the Town Hill and display the boats racing in the Gold Cup Races..

  3. Mark says:

    I didn’t quite understand your message but why would you ever close Main St. In reality it is not a great or varied shopping experience. We need to be realistic. There is basically nothing downtown that as a resident I need or require.

  4. Jack says:


    Never mind the TOURISTS . How would I get there? Leave the street open People watching goes both ways . Looking in or Looking put both sides are equally enjoying the experience

  5. Mark says:

    Could you just imagine Main St. closed even for an hour in the summer. How would the tourists get to the beer store? That could safely be estimated at half the traffic! It would be madness.

  6. Marnie says:

    It may sound idyllic but the idea of closing Main Street to traffic to allow for a farmer’s market and coffee on the patio is not practical. We used to have a farmer’s market guess where? On the Market Square. That’s where it still belongs. Main Street should be open for business as usual with occasional exceptions for special events of short duration. Any effort to tart up Picton for a “European” feel would be likely to fail. Bring back Loyalist Days and allow it to remain true to its history.

  7. Susan says:

    Patios are a fabulous idea! So European! Closing the main street on certain days or weeks to allow only pedestrian traffic would be a bonus. An outdoor farmers’ market and/or craft market could then be set up. What a wonderful way to enjoy our short summer season.

  8. Jack says:

    I sat on the patio of Sir John “A” s in Kingston on Easter weekend. It was wonderful . Highly reccomend you try it . There must have been a dozen others in that same area and they were all busy.

  9. Marnie says:

    The first priority should be a safe and comfortable shopping experience for those patronizing Picton stores. Navigating around these patios will be problematic for some. It’s an appealing concept but Main Street here does not afford the necessary space to execute it properly. It works at Subway because their patio area does not encroach on the sidewalk.

  10. IM Messenger says:

    QUOTED from article:
    “Municipal guidelines govern the health and safety, design, materials, accessibility requirements and appearance of the patio.”

    These street patios are happening through out the world re: urbanization, appealing to those in downtown living lifestyles, adding a mix of walking/ biking / public transit. Last year many Canadian pilot projects in Vancouver, Kamloops, Toronto, Hamilton, Leduc, Barrie, Charlottletown, Calgary, etc. It’s all coming down from the upper tiers of gov’t. Mertens role was to make it happen in Picton no big gift in the offering as stated. (Google it, see for yourself). Just another enforcement to change a by-law, easy-peasy stuff. Pay attention to what really comes down from higher ups to see what autonomy council really has in running their “Loom”. Follow the money.

    Allowing more pedestrians in downtown areas usually requires the street to be partially closed by way of reduction of parking spaces on the street to allow more pedestrian access due to the encroachment and crowding of patio tables and/or seating.

    The iron fencing surrounding the cafe dining areas is referred to as, jail fencing. So, is the street going to be adjusted to reduce the number of vehicles downtown? How does the fire route fit into this design. As this issue has been recently raised by firemen and their new fire hall outside of town. Also, some ppl have raised the issue of enough room for wheel chairs, etc. This must be considered in the plan. Has it? Is their really enough space to do this in Picton? or is their over-crowding?

    It does increase profits to businesses as the study shows. The public in some cities, wants the bylaw to go a step further and allow alcohol to be served on these patios. The execution of the design is crucial to the success. So, we’ll see how Picton does without casualties which usually happen at intersections – beware.

    The main drive for these urban spaces is to encourage more interaction with ppl and more so to offer the chance of spending more money. It’s good for socializing, a big plus.

    These spaces are loved by ppl, they CAN work successfully as demonstrated in Toronto area. A pleasure for many natives of the county who are used to this experience or as tourists who will be open to a modern kind of cultural experience. Dare to say a “bumpkin” experience.

    It won’t help pay for roads, unless the business association is going to opt into paying more taxes from the profits coming their way. In Ottawa council voted to raise patio fees 10%. There is a way to fill coffers.

  11. Mark says:

    I do not dislike the concept but I know the size of the sidewalks do not allow room for patrons and the walking traffic. It could be a health and safety issue as well as an accessibility violation. That will be resolved by complaint or
    legal action. I assume our insurance liability responsibilities have been addressed. If it is County property the taxpayer will be on the hook as first respondent prior to the business owner.

  12. Paul says:

    This is an excellent idea as long as it doesn’t interfere with Elderly Folk who rely on a wheel chair or scooter to get around. You see Jack this is good for businesses related to or catering to tourists and its an expense incurred by the business not The County. Great Idea…

  13. Marnie says:

    Some of those historic streetscapes that our mayor is touting could do with a facelift. Who wants to inhale gasoline fumes while sitting in the broiling sun to drink and dine? For elderly persons who navigate the streets with a cane or walker those patios are a potential hazard. There was a big fuss about Beach Bum displaying racks of clothing on the sidewalk but it’s suddenly okay to string patios along Main Street?

  14. Mark says:

    Sarcasm at it’s best. If it doesn’t affect you personally or your wallet then attempt to make small of reasonable objections.

  15. Jack says:

    Watch out!!! They are probably going attract TOURIST,S. We are all going to hell in a bucket.

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