Interested restaurant owners in Old Bellevue can apply with the city to increase outdoor dining on sidewalks and select on street parking spaces. The on-street patio extensions are expected to stay through early September, but sidewalk patios may remain open year round.
The expanded outdoor dining patio is meant to support local restaurants with the seating capacity restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has resulted in low revenues for local businesses. Many neighboring cities are offering sidewalks, parking and some roads for the same reason.
“Old Bellevue is such a unique and beloved part of our city,” Bellevue Mayor Lynne Robinson stated. “This kind of program has been successful in other cities and we think residents will be excited to experience it in Bellevue.”
The city stated in a press release that the expansion came after discussions with Old Bellevue Merchants Association, local restaurateurs and residents. City staff will work with interested restaurant owners and operators to temporarily expand existing sidewalk cafes into specific on-street parking stalls. City staff will assist through the process and commit to reviewing less than a week.
Travel lanes on Main Street and most of the on-street parking stalls will remain open.
Mac Cummins, the City’s Community Development Director, stated that business and nonprofit leaders who need of support should reach out for direct assistance.
“Whether they run a restaurant in Old Bellevue or a hair salon in Lake Hills, we’re here to help,” Cummins stated.
Interested businesses can visit bellevuewa.gov/mainstreet.