It originally started as a way to maintain social distancing while dining, but many New Yorkers began to hope the new Open Streets and Open Restaurants programs would become more permanent NYC fixtures.
And now, that’s partly going to happen! Mayor de Blasio just announced that both programs would return to the city on June 1, 2021.
Open Streets allows certain blocks to be closed to vehicular traffic so pedestrians and bicyclists have more room to spread out outdoors, and Open Restaurants allows outdoor dining to easily occur on sidewalks and in curb lanes. An additional initiative combines both programs, with restaurants able to use open streets as outdoor patios for table service during certain weekend hours.
“It’s time to start a new New York City tradition,” the Mayor said. “New Yorkers deserve the chance to enjoy their meals outside next summer, and restaurants deserve the chance to continue building their businesses back. I’m proud to expand such a popular program, and I look forward to participating myself next year.”
The hours for Open Restaurants (sidewalk/parking space dining) will continue Monday to Saturday, 8am – 11pm, and Sunday 10am – 11pm. Street dining will take place only on weekends. You can see all restaurants participating this year on this searchable map.
The Mayor’s office said over 9,000 restaurants have signed up for the program this year and that is helped save an estimated 80,000 jobs.
And remember, for this year street dining has been extended through October 31! Next year’s will also last until the end of October.
featured image source: Instagram / @newyorkcity4all