Patio program puts restaurants and patrons #inthistogether
A new program that allows restaurants to push their dining space outdoors to safely accommodate more customers will mean owners and patrons must cooperate to make it work.
The Loveland City Clerk is taking applications from restaurant operators for the Loveland Patio Program that could greatly increase their available dining space. And, restaurants are urging patrons to take suggested measures to ensure everyone’s health and safety.
Gov. Jared Polis’ most recent COVID-19 public health order allows restaurants to serve at 50 percent capacity within their establishments, and to augment those seatings with outdoor space on sidewalks, parking lots, or patios. Loveland’s program allows patio operation from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
The Loveland Patio Program will help to open dining opportunities for the first time since restaurants statewide shut down their main operations in late March, many of them offering take-out service at curbside and using numerous delivery options to serve customers.
Dining out for the first time in more than two months will require patrons to plan their outings and observe safety protocols that restaurants must adhere to under State and County health orders.
A full checklist for diners, and a Patio Program application for operators, is available at www.cityofloveland.org/LovelandPatioProgram
Here are some of the steps restaurants are asking their customers to take:
• Call ahead for reservations, with walk-in traffic discouraged by owners.
• Patrons should not enter a restaurant if they have any of the COVID-19 symptoms.
• Customers must wear face coverings when safe physical distancing cannot be maintained, when entering the establishment until seated, and if moving from their tables to other areas of the establishment.
• Parties must be limited to eight or fewer people.
• Wait in a car or outside the restaurant until a table is available.
• Use touchless payment options and avoid cash if possible.
The full list of considerations that customers should honor is listed here.
The Loveland Patio Program is designed to allow the city’s restaurant owners to maintain business viability even as the COVID-19 pandemic persists. More information on the program and the orders that permit it is available at www.larimer.org/coronavirus.