Sudbury restaurant owners making decisions on patios

As summer approaches, restaurant owners in Sudbury are thinking ahead to what the season could look like.

City of Greater Sudbury will waive patio fees for business owners, once province allows them to open

The province isn't allowing patios to open yet in Ontario but restaurant owners are planning the summer season now. (Megan Thomas/CBC)

As summer approaches, restaurant owners in Sudbury are thinking ahead to what the season could look like.

Currently, restaurants in Ontario are only able to offer take-out and delivery due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

But this week, the City of Greater Sudbury announced if the provincial rules changes and patios could open, the city will waive the fees for business owners.

The general manager of The Laughing Buddha and the Townehouse Tavern in Sudbury, Veronica Desjardins, says discussions are already underway to prepare.

"We've already started kind of planning out what this might look like," she said. "Even, you know, a bit ahead of the game in starting to space out our tables on the patio. And you know we've put out the preliminary pieces to start setting up our front patios as well when the time comes that we can do."

Desjardin says it would help to be able to offer a patio space as well as delivery and take-out.

"I know a lot of the community is looking forward to coming back for those days on the patio," she said. "When it's time, we're ready."

Planning ahead

The co-owner of La Fromagerie, Valerie Fremlin, says she wants to open her patio, but says she's not sure if the logistics would work.

"Considering patio season, it's a little bit difficult for us because our patio is very small," she said.

"I don't think we'd be able to have more than three tables at any given time with the new restrictions in place."

Fremlin says having permit fees waived would help, but still questions if it's worth it.

"It's great I think that the city is willing to, you know, comp those fees," she said. "But whether or not the effort and the extra staffing would be feasible for us, we're still trying to figure that out."

With files from Sarah MacMillan


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