A woman walks past a closed restaurant in a quiet downtown, amid concerns about the spread of COVID-19, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Vancouver city council is also preparing to debate the issue of making more room for restaurants and Mayor Kennedy Stewart has said the city must think creatively to help spur recovery. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

A woman walks past a closed restaurant in a quiet downtown, amid concerns about the spread of COVID-19, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Vancouver city council is also preparing to debate the issue of making more room for restaurants and Mayor Kennedy Stewart has said the city must think creatively to help spur recovery. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Victoria mayor says city preparing to create open spaces for restaurant recovery

B.C. restaurants have been restricted to take-out service since March

Victoria’s mayor says she wants to give the city’s restaurants, pubs and retailers more space to reopen successfully with a plan that could expand outdoor patios to sidewalks, parking lots and streets closed to traffic.

Lisa Helps says her council is prepared to quickly approve flexible COVID-19 recovery plans to allow open-air dining experiences in an environment of safe physical distancing for customers and employees.

B.C. restaurants have been restricted to take-out service since March, but Helps says staff will be urged to find ways to have expansion plans in place as the industry prepares to welcome back customers this month.

Ian Tostenson, president of the B.C. Restaurant and Food Services Association, says struggling restaurants need immediate help getting back on their feet and expanding into public spaces would provide more room to serve customers safely.

Vancouver city council is also preparing to debate the issue of making more room for restaurants and Mayor Kennedy Stewart has said the city must think creatively to help spur recovery.

Restaurants Canada, a not-for-profit industry association, says a recent survey of members finds that seven out of 10 owners fear they won’t have enough money to pay their expenses over the next three months.

READ MORE: Plan in the works for safe re-opening of B.C. restaurants amid COVID-19

READ MORE: British Columbians can double their ‘pandemic bubble’ mid-May, but no large gatherings

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

City of VictoriaCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A woman wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 uses walking sticks while walking up a hill, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Interior Health reports 83 more COVID-19 infections overnight

46 cases are now associated with a COVID-19 community cluster in Revelstoke

A man wearing a face mask to prevent the spread of COVID-19 walks past a mural in Vancouver on Monday, Nov. 30, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marissa Tiel
212 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health over the weekend

A total of 490 cases remain active; 15 in hospital

(Metro Creative Photo)
Hey kids, time to write up some holiday magic

The contest is open to students and home-schooled students

Wood chips and a pile of scrap metal is what's left of the District of Clearwater's chip silo as an early morning fire broke out at the Dutch Lake Community Centre Saturday morning. The mayor said in a Facebook post the DOC does have a secondary heating system. (Stephanie Hagenaars photo)
Early morning fire takes DOC chip silo

The blaze was contained to the DLCC external heating system and corner of gym

Japanese knotweed plants are pretty, like broom, but are just as relentlessly invasive. (Submited)
TNRD looks to expand invasive plant program to municipalities

The TNRD’s 11 municipalities are currently not part of the invasive plant program

A tongue-in-cheek message about wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 on a sign outside a church near Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection count climbs back up to 656

20 more people in hospital, active cases still rising

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
B.C. researchers launch study to test kids, young adults for COVID-19 antibodies

Kids and youth can often be asymptomatic carriers of the novel coronavirus

A sign is seen this past summer outside the Yunesit’in Government office west of Williams Lake reminding visitors and members to stay safe amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (Rebecca Dyok photo)
B.C. First Nation leaders await privacy commissioner decision on COVID-19 information

Release of life-saving data cannot wait, says coalition of First Nations

MLA Jennifer Whiteside is B.C.’s new minister of education. She is speaking out against Chilliwack school trustee Barry Neufeld and asking him to resign. (Black Press)
New education minister calls on Chilliwack trustee to resign

Whiteside echoes former minister’s promise to look at options to remove Barry Neufeld

Peter Beckett. ~ File photo
Supreme Court of Canada to decide if it will hear appeal in 2010 wife murder trial

Peter Beckett has stood trial twice for murder in connection with the death of his wife, Laura Letts-Beckett

Tabor Home in Abbotsford. (Ben Lypka/Abbotsford News)
B.C.’s largest COVID-19 care-home outbreak records 19 deaths, 147 cases

Tabor Home in Abbotsford has been battling outbreak since Nov. 4

Ash and Lisa Van carry a freshly cut Christmas tree while wearing personal protective masks at a Christmas Tree Farm in Egbert, Ontario, Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020 THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Cole Burston
‘Everyone wants a tree and they want it now’: Christmas tree sales on pace for record

Anticipated demand for Christmas trees has sparked a rush by some to purchase more trees wholesale

Most Read