------NYC updates from 9/25-------

NYC hospitality alliance writes: 

Today, we're proud Mayor de Blasio has announced that policies are forthcoming to make all of this permissible.

As you know, the NYC Hospitality Alliance has been advocating to make outdoor dining permanent, to allow the use of heat lamps to keep customers warm outside during the cooler months, and to allow restaurants to utilize adjacent space where feasible so they can accommodate more guests and generate much needed revenue.  And today, we're proud Mayor de Blasio has announced that policies are forthcoming to make all of this permissible.
Here are some VERY IMPORTANT details:
  • Open Restaurants program (sidewalk and roadway outdoor dining) will be made permanent.
  • Expand seating to the frontage of adjacent properties, as long as the adjacent property owners formally agree to the use of the space for a specified period of time and a commitment not to charge a fee for its use. 
    • The City will be coming out with guidance for stronger, sturdier restaurant setup requirements in the coming week. We are working closely with DOT on this guidance and strongly urge you not to invest in new expanded space until this guidance has been issued. 
    • DOT will be issuing application forms that will need to be filled out in order to expand to the adjacent space. Restaurants should not expand to the adjacent space until the forms are completed. If you expand prior to filing out the forms, your setups will be subject violations as well as removal. 
  • Electrical heaters will be allowed on both sidewalk and roadway. Propane and natural gas heaters will be allowed on sidewalks only; they will remain prohibited in roadway seating. More guidance on heaters will be coming out in the coming days. We also strongly urge you to not set up heating systems that may not comply with DOB and FDNY requirements.
  • Restaurants will also be permitted to use tent enclosures to keep diners warm. In partial tent enclosures, at least 50% of the tent's side wall surface area must remain open and electrical heaters are allowed. In full tent enclosures, the tent's side walls may be closed but occupancy limitations will be capped at 25% of capacity, and indoor dining guidelines must be followed; electrical heaters will also be allowed. Enclosed structures, such as plastic domes, will be allowed for individual parties and must have adequate ventilation to allow for air circulation.
This is all very good news for our industry. The NYC Hospitality Alliance will be working closely with Mayor de Blasio's administration and City Council on all the details of the program, which will be released in the near future. As we explained above, please do not make any of these changes until all the requirements are final. We will let you know when they are.
NYC Indoor dining opens 9/30! 
  • 25 percent occupancy limit
  • Temperature checks will be required at the door for all customers
  • One member of each party will be required to provide contact information for tracing if needed
  • No bar service - bars will only be used as a source of making drinks and serving them tableside
  • Masks must be worn at all times when not seated at a table
  • Tables must be six feet apart
  • Restaurants close at midnight
  • Restaurants should operate with enhanced air filtration, ventilation and purification standards
  • Limit air recirculation and allow for outside air ventilation
  • Outdoor dining will continue in the interim
  • 50% to open 11/1
Reopening dates:
  • Indoor dining  (25% capacity): 9/30


  • All tables must be 6 feet apart on all sides, Max 10 people per table.
  • Where 6 feet distancing is not feasible between the table must use a physical barrier.
  • Physical Barrier must be 5 feet tall and not block emergency exits (ex. acrylic guards)
  • indoor capacity is limited to no more than 50% of the maximum occupancy

Expected guidance on Open-streets outdoor dining expansion of seating:

Curbside seating 

  • Restaurants in "commercial corridors" will be able to convert parking spaces for the dining service. 
  • Restaurants need to supply their own barricades and planters (buy here) to block the area from the road. 
  • The city will allow restaurants to register and certify themselves online to expedite the process, but they must comply with guidelines like not blocking bus stops, fire hydrants, and intersections. 

Open streets

  • New York City has opened over 45 miles of streets to pedestrians, closing them to traffic, and plans to open 100 miles of roads across the city. 
  • Restaurants will be able to utilize the street space in front of their locations. 
  • The city is also working to identify specific streets with a heavy concentration of restaurants and bars as it opens more streets. 


  • The city is simplifying the permit process for restaurants to use sidewalks for seating
  • Restaurants will still need to maintain space on sidewalks for pedestrians, including those with disabilities.