Wednesday, July 27, 2022 (Wetaskiwin, Alberta) – Wetaskiwin restaurant owners interested in developing an outdoor restaurant patio or sidewalk patio can now reference the City’s recently updated Land Use Bylaw for approval process specifications.
During its regular July 11 meeting, city council approved Bylaw 2019-22 — amending Land Use Bylaw 1804-13 —. which provides seasonal commercial patio regulations. The City instituted a pilot program in 2021 for temporary patios for food service, allowing businesses to provide more seating to ensure greater physical distancing, as per the provincially-mandated public health measures at that time.
“Patios are a great way to enjoy a local restaurant while taking advantage of our precious summer season,” said Andrew Chell, the City’s manager of planning and development. “We wanted to ensure that businesses are able to set up patios if they want to, with minimal red tape.”
The updated land use framework for patios includes two types of patio uses:
- Outdoor restaurant patios, which are patios on private land that are developed as a permanent or semi-permanent structure as an accessory to an approved restaurant or other dine-in food service.
- Sidewalk patios, which are temporary seating areas placed in front of a restaurant on public land (such as the sidewalk) that do not restrict pedestrian flow and public use of the space and is removed from the sidewalk when the business is closed.
Current Approval Process
Change in Process
Rationale for Change
Outdoor restaurant patios
require a development permit.
Current process already allows review of site plan, parking requirements, and notification for other
departments such as Fire Services for inspections.
Sidewalk patios do not require a development permit but are still required to comply with all regulations.
Sidewalk patios are now included in the City’s Land Use Bylaw.
Adding regulations for sidewalk patios to the Land Use Bylaw ensure these patios are designed safely and minimize impacts to public spaces, while allowing businesses the opportunity to provide a patio dining experience.
Sidewalk patios are allowed anywhere restaurant use is allowed and do not require a development permit, as long as they are temporary and portable fixtures that can be removed from the sidewalk when the operating business is closed. Sidewalk patios must also maintain a two-metre walkway along the sidewalk to facilitate pedestrian traffic safely.
Outdoor restaurant patios were included within the Land Use Bylaw previously, but are now allowed anywhere a restaurant use is allowed
Expanding the Land Use Bylaw to allow for these patio uses falls in alignment with city council’s community and economy strategic goals. Patios can contribute to a vibrant public space and provide businesses an opportunity to incorporate different land use types and dining options within their restaurants.
For more information on the patio approval process, contact planning and development services at 780.361.4405 or email@example.com.
About the City of Wetaskiwin
Wetaskiwin is a secure, connected, and inclusive community, home to a diverse population of nearly 13,000 people. Located only 30 minutes south of Edmonton International Airport, the City of Wetaskiwin provides a high quality of life through ample recreation opportunities, diverse cultural activities, and a modernized, business-friendly downtown.
Kristen Hewlett, Interim Communications Manager
City of Wetaskiwin
(p) 780.361.4415 (c) 780.335.2742