Ottawa

Starbucks closes patios, ends indoor seating in Ottawa and Quebec

Starbucks in Ottawa and the province of Quebec will no longer offer patios or indoor seating for customers, the company announced Thursday.

Company says it wants to ensure safety in those regions 'in particular'

People sit outside a Starbucks in Ottawa on Thursday. The coffee chain is temporarily not allowing people in Quebec and Ottawa to sit inside and on patios, because of the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Jean Delisle/CBC)

Starbucks in Ottawa and the province of Quebec will no longer offer patios or indoor seating for customers, the company announced Thursday.

A spokesperson said the change was due to rising COVID-19 cases in the city and province.

"In those regions in particular we wanted to make sure we were taking employee and customer safety seriously," said the spokesperson Thursday night.

There is no precise end date to the new policy, the spokesperson said. 

Ottawa's medical officer of health said earlier this week there's been an "alarming" increase of positive COVID-19 tests, urging residents to cut almost entirely back on close contact with people they don't live with, which includes not dining in at restaurants with people you don't live with.

Thursday's change allows Starbucks to comply with a new regulations in Quebec to limit activity at restaurants and bars over the next month.

Restaurant dining rooms and bars in Quebec's red zones, which do not yet include Outaouais but include Montreal, Quebec City and Laval, must remain closed for 28 days, beginning Oct. 1.

Starbucks in Ottawa and Quebec will still take to-go orders inside and at drive-thrus. 

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