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CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8 | cbs8.com

City of Vista to allow restaurants to seat customers outdoors

In June, the Vista City Council voted to approve temporarily relaxing regulations related to outdoor seating for restaurants and microbreweries due to COVID-19.

VISTA, Calif. — The second wave of shutdown orders has left many businesses reeling. The City of Vista is trying to do its part to help by encouraging restaurant and brewery owners to take their customers outside during the pandemic.

In June, the Vista City Council voted to approve temporarily relaxing regulations related to outdoor seating for restaurants and microbreweries due to the local emergency created by the COVID-19 pandemic. The emergency ordinance is part of the city’s Business Economic Recovery Plan, created in May in response to the devastating impacts on the business community as a result of the crisis.

The City of San Diego recently approved a plan similar to this. Mia Davis of Mikko Sushi told News 8 that she never envisioned having a patio. The restaurant moved all their table outside and Davis said, “If I wasn’t able to move outside, I would have to lay off several employees.” The new ordinance has allowed Mikko Sushi to have an extra 11 tables along the sidewalk for outdoor dining. The city also approved for her to have temporary fencing around the outdoor dining area.

Director of Hospitality for Belching Beaver, Ralph Lizzaraga detailed what the brewery has done. 

“We fenced off our existing parking lot," he said. "We drew up plans that allowed for ‘cabana’ style seating that wouldn't be able to be moved around. We have easy-up tents with picnic tables throughout the parking lot. We also moved our host stand to the parking lot entrance. We now only have one entrance for the entire property to make sure everyone who comes in knows all of the policies and procedures we have put in place. We wanted to keep the extension to the parking lot, and decided not to try and move on to the sidewalk. We felt it would be easier to keep things safe and under control.”

Lizzaraga said he is thankful for the city’s support.

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