Roadside dining - COVID-19

1. What we're doing to help

The City of Stonnington is working to open up additional outdoor dining spaces for hospitality businesses in Stonnington in line with the Victorian Government’s COVID-19 roadmap to reopening.

Encouraging hospitality businesses to apply for a COVID-19 Roadside Dining Permit is one of the ways we're doing this.

This is a free trial program for businesses, with permits granted until 31 March 2021. The City of Stonnington will review the program with businesses in January and February 2021 as updated health advice from the Victorian Government is available.

This allows businesses that meet defined criteria the opportunity to use on-street car parking spaces in front of their business for roadside dining with the consent of neighbouring businesses.

Note that we can only allow roadside dining permits where it is safe and practicable and where supported by neighbouring businesses. All applications will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis and may need to be referred to VicRoads on main arterial roads (such as Glenferrie Road, Malvern). Where roadside dining is not possible, businesses are encouraged to apply for our extended footpath trading program.

Venues will be responsible for all ongoing costs for maintenance of roadside dining areas and businesses are encouraged to contact their insurance company for advice prior to making an application.

If approved, the City of Stonnington will support your application by either:

  • Supplying safety barriers (with venue to provide furniture tables and chairs), or
  • Supplying safety barriers with some built in infrastructure (with venue to provide tables and chairs).

Businesses are also able to submit their own proposal to install infrastructure to enable roadside dining with applications reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Some matched funding is potentially available for restaurants to create and install.

Although a permit may be granted prior the Victorian Government’s restrictions changing, businesses must not use roadside dining space until permitted within Victoria’s COVID-19 roadmap to reopening.

This permit does not extend any liquor licence (red line), visit the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation website to learn about temporary licenses for external areas.

Funding is available from the Victorian Government for businesses to adapt to outdoor dining.

  

2. Safety, consultation and operation

Safety criteria

To ensure the safety of diners, pedestrians, cyclists and motorists, the City of Stonnington has developed key safety criteria to determine site suitability.

Roadside dining can only be considered within the below conditions:

  1. The speed limit must be less than or equal to 40 km/h on the street.
  2. On street dining cannot replace blue restrictions (such as accessible parking spaces), red zones (such as No Stopping areas, Loading Zones, Truck Zones, Taxi Zones, Mail Zones) or green parking restrictions less than 1 hour (see below for more information about this).
  3. On street dining is not permitted in bus zones, abutting tram stops or clearways.
  4. On street dining must be at least one parking spot directly abutting the food premises and cannot be on the opposite side of the street.
  5. On street dining will not be considered where a three metre width for through traffic cannot be maintained.
  6. On street dining is not permitted within 1 metre of a fire hydrant or 3 metres from a post box.

 

Parking restrictions

Our preference is to maintain existing parking restrictions (such as 15 minute, 1 hour or 2 hour spaces) where possible. However, if this means that your hospitality business will not be able to implement roadside dining and you have the support of surrounding businesses to change signed restrictions in the immediate area please include this in your application for us to review.

Note that consultation with businesses will slow down the review and approval process.

 

Options available

Venues are responsible for all ongoing costs for maintenance of roadside dining structures and businesses are encouraged to contact their insurance company for advice prior to making an application.

If approved, the City of Stonnington will support your application by either:

  • Supplying safety barriers with venue to provide furniture tables and chairs, or
  • Supplying safety barriers with some built in furniture with venue to provide tables and chairs.

Safety barrier with furniture built in:

Barrier with tables
 
Safety barrier only:
Barrier only

Businesses are also able to submit their own proposal to install infrastructure to enable roadside dining with applications reviewed on a case-by-case basis. See below for safety elements that will be considered for all applications.

Some matched funding is potentially available for restaurants to create and install their own proposal if approved by the City of Stonnington. Funding is also available from the Victorian Government for businesses to adapt to outdoor dining.

 

Operation and management of roadside dining

Venues are responsible for all ongoing costs for maintenance of roadside dining areas and businesses are encouraged to contact their insurance company for advice prior to making an application.

Roadside dining must also be cleaned, sanitised and managed in accordance with the Victorian Government Hospitality Industry Guidelines for COVID-19.

 

Essential safety elements

To be considered, roadside dining applications must be able to fulfil the below essential safety criteria.

  • A continuous physical barrier must be provided to live traffic lanes of 40km/h, with appropriate safety rating for use.
  • All structural elements and barriers (not including dining furniture) must be fixed and heavy duty to ensure safety of diners, including consideration of how they behave in high wind conditions.
  • The leading barrier treatment must be fitted with hazard markers and reflective treatments to ensure its visibility to oncoming traffic.
  • Appropriate barriers must installed at the edge of the parking space between the adjacent parking bays, and be set back at least 1m from the end of active parking bays for access movements.
  • Reflective tape or bollards with reflective strips must be placed along the edge of the roadside dining installation.
  • All roadside dining must be closed adjacent to live traffic lanes to ensure safety of patrons. Entry and exit shall be by the footpath.
  • All items must be contained within the envelope of the roadside dining. No items are to extend beyond the barrier line at any height.

If you decide to use City of Stonnington provided safety barriers (information above), the below will be incorporated into what we provide. If you design your own roadside dining structure, please ensure this is incorporated.

 

Preferred safety elements

The below elements will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis depending on street and traffic conditions and the proposed roadside dining installation. We’ll assess all applications to consider the inclusion of additional mitigating measures.

  • In all eligible streets, roadside dining must have a physical structure defining the boundary of the outdoor dining area and provide a physical barrier between moving traffic and the diners.
  • Spike down kerbing may be required with keep right signs along the edge abutting the traffic lane, or a concrete block positioned on the approach corner of roadside dining on an eligible street.
  • Roadside dining installations should have vertical elements that make them visible to traffic, such as flexible posts or bollards.
  • Roadside dining should be at least 10m from an unsignalised intersection, and 20m from a signalised intersection
  • Furniture must be suitable quality for public use and not prone to breakage or other adverse impacts under reasonably expected conditions.
  • Depending on the speed limit of the street, additional specific safety elements may be specified for installation in order to ensure that the space remains safe from the surrounding traffic.
  • The use of line-marking to direct traffic away from roadside dining may be required at some locations where the width of the adjacent carriageway permits.
  • An appropriate setback from active bicycle lanes will be required.
  • Safety, visibility and accessibility should be assessed for day and night conditions.

 

Consultation with neighbouring businesses

Businesses are required to get the consent of businesses that directly neighbour you prior to making an application for roadside dining. See our template business consultation letter(DOCX, 21KB) for a guide. 

 

Removal

Roadside dining may need to be removed temporarily or permanently for streetscape improvements or other works as required by the City of Stonnington or its contractors. The City of Stonnington will give the permit holder as much notice as possible.

 

Furniture and lighting

Furniture must be of a suitable quality for public use – and not prone to breakage, wind lift or other adverse impact under reasonably expected conditions. Furniture such as tables and chairs must be durable and comfortable, and should be contributory to their precinct.

In most circumstances, street lighting should be sufficient. If lighting is deemed to be required, please contact the City of Stonnington directly to enquire. 

 

3. Making an application and assessment process

Given the complexity of on-street conditions, all applications will be assessed on a case by case basis.

You can complete our pre-application (link below) form to get started and a member of our team will assess the information provided and contact you to discuss further.

What you’ll need to get started

A letter or email of consent from neighbouring businesses - see our template letter(DOCX, 21KB) for a guide of what's required

Photos of the parking spaces you propose to convert into roadside dining, these must clearly show where they are in relation to:

  • Your shopfront
  • The shopfront of neighbouring businesses who have provided consent

A drawn site plan showing the proposed outdoor dining area, parking spaces, traffic conditions, location relative to buildings, adjacent properties, driveways, residential dwellings or residential buildings and existing features in the footpath. Applicants must also detail the proposed layout of the roadside dining area as follows.

If possible, please provide a scale 1:100 site plan accurately showing:

  • the hospitality venue and its entrance
  • existing parking space/s and dimensions
  • details, photos and specifications of all proposed furniture and infrastructure
  • adjacent buildings and businesses (include addresses and entrances)
  • adjacent residential buildings or dwellings on each side of the proposed outdoor dining area and in direct proximity
  • street address/roadway or street name
  • traffic conditions in front of property (e.g. loading zone, one hour parking, etc.)
  • footpath (with width shown), kerb line, driveways, adjacent traffic or bicycle lanes and any existing or existing proposed footpath trading spaces
  • liquor licence red line boundaries
  • existing street furniture such as street lights, signs, parking metres, fire hydrants, seats, bicycle parking, utility access points
  • street trees, tree pits, grates and landscaped areas.

 

Application process

  • Complete a pre-application and submit.
  • A member of our team will contact will respond within three business days to confirm receipt and discuss your options.
  • Your application will be reviewed internally and an initial response provided within five business days.

 

Apply here