Café-Terrasses Overreaching onto Public Sidewalk Space?

Café-Terrasses Overreaching onto Public Sidewalk Space?

Photo: Christophe Finot

There are sidewalks and there are sidewalk cafés; which is more important is a question being put to the directors of city hall in Quebec City again this year. After Grand Allée and rue St. Paul had their permits granted to take up more sidewalk to increase the outdoor seating for the resident restaurants in the last few years, it now appears as though rue Cartier wants the same opportunity.

“Cafés Terrases” are very popular in the city and with the weather not always accomodating there is always a mad rush to eat outside when the sun is shining and the temperature is just right. This presents a problem when there is a huge demand but not enough places to go around, so over the last few years the City has allowed certain restaurants to expand their outdoor eating capacity by taking up more sidewalk space, much to the detriment of pedestrians who actually use the sidewalks for walking.

The merchants of la rue Cartier have put in their demand to appropriate a certain amount of sidewalk space to accommodate their clientele this year and the city seems willing, but explains that there are certain restrictions and rules which have to be followed in order for that to happen. There is always the question of public safety, circulation and the environment that have to be considered when using public spaces to create revenue. La rue Cartier is hoping the city will pass their permit this year but it may only be for the year 2015. In the meantime you may have to stand in line to get a seat in the sun on rue Cartier, but at least you’ll be warm and there’ll be room on the sidewalk to do so.

………………………………………………………………….. Staff Writer

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