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Phoenix, Mesa, Glendale Restaurants Can Extend Outdoor Seating

By Christina Estes
Published: Sunday, July 5, 2020 - 5:05am
Updated: Wednesday, March 17, 2021 - 1:28pm

Organ Stop
Charlotte Shaff
Diners at Organ Stop Pizza in January 2020 (left) and during the pandemic and social distancing July 2, 2020.

Phoenix is following in the footsteps of Mesa and Glendale by allowing restaurants to extend their dining areas.

On Wednesday, the Phoenix City Council voted to allow restaurants to temporarily add or expand outdoor seating areas at no charge. The action also permits temporary signage. A restaurant owner must apply for an Administrative Temporary Use Permit through the Planning and Development Department.

Many Arizona restaurants are struggling because health guidelines limit seating. By allowing restaurants to expand, the goal is to attract more customers which can also help boost tax revenues for cities.

On June 1, Mesa leaders voted for the change while the city is under a local emergency declaration.

Mayor John Giles said, “These are extraordinary circumstances we are in and the temporary action will make life a little easier for some of our small businesses struggling financially due to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Glendale has created a webpage to help existing restaurants that want to extend serving areas for up to six months. 

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