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outdoor dining October 22, 2020

Outdoor Dining Downtown Crackdown

Outdoor dining service early Saturday night, October 3rd, was shut down. It was done by the police. This upset Downtown San Jose restaurants and businesses with San Jose officials over this move.


San Jose is now tweaking its Al Fresco program. They want to allow restaurants to use public outdoor spaces to stay open later. That would be in time for this weekend’s dining.


Outdoor Dining Services Faces Restrictions yet Again

The San Jose Police Department’s new downtown patrol team paid a “surprise” visit to restaurants on San Pedro Street in Downtown. They informed the restaurants to revert back to a previous policy with restrictions. The city’s Al Fresco program requires they wrap service to customers in public outdoor spaces by 10 p.m.


Earlier this summer, the street closed to vehicular traffic. It was under the city’s Al Fresco program. In fact, the street is one of the downtown area’s most popular nightlife centers. In turn, this program allows restaurants there to open up more tables for outdoor dining. The San Jose’s Al Fresco program states businesses could only serve customers in the newly-transformed outdoor spaces until 10 p.m. Yet the rule wasn’t enforced.


Restaurants are Trying to get as Many Sales as They can

Rachel Kaiser said they have never had cops come in. In turn, try to shut that down yet. Kaiser is the general manager of the District. This is a restaurant on San Pedro Street. Kaiser added they want to try to get as many sales as they can. Plus, she said additionally, closing something down on a busy street like ours is not something we’re going to do until we have to.

Urgent Letter to San Jose City Manager David Sykes

The Silicon Valley Organization and the San Jose Downtown Association said restaurants felt surprised at seeing law enforcement officials. As a result, they shut down their outdoor dining operations early. This was especially ironic after the county was moving to the state’s less-restrictive Orange Tier for reopening. This was in a letter to San Jose City Manager David Sykes on Monday. Therefore, the two business advocates urged the city to take “immediate action to allow local restaurants to serve customers now.” Because soon the winter season will soon come. In turn, they will lose this opportunity to save their local, small businesses.

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