Tempe to allow restaurants, shops to use parking lots, outdoor spaces

By Mike Sunnucks | Rose Law Group Reporter

The city of Tempe is taking some new steps to help restaurants, coffee shops and other business navigate social distancing and COVID-19 protocols.

Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell has issued a proclamation allowing restaurants and other businesses to apply for an expansion of premises permit at no charge. The move allows restaurants and shops, in particular, to expand into parking lots, rights of way and other outdoor spaces. Tempe city staff are expediting the permit applications.

COVID-19 social distancing has required restaurants and coffee shops to reduce their traditional table and customer capacities. That makes it hard for some of the reopening businesses.

The Tempe action also allows for the use of 12 x 12 pop-up tents. A city video outlines the efforts.

The city is also waiving permits for new banners and is now offering free parking for one-hour in downtown Tempe and the Mill Avenue area.

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