Skip to content Skip to left sidebar Skip to right sidebar Skip to footer

Erwin Planning Commission approves sidewalk dining ordinance

An ordinance governing sidewalk dining in the Town of Erwin’s downtown district was approved by the Erwin Planning Commission during a meeting on Thursday, Nov. 20, at Town Hall. All members of the commission – Chairman Roland Bailey, Mayor Doris Hensley, Betty Chandler, Sue Jean Wilson and Clyde Griffith – voted in favor of the ordinance, which will now be sent to the Erwin Board of Mayor and Alderman for final approval.
“The intent of this is to encourage residents and visitors to go downtown,” City Recorder Glenn Rosenoff said. “We are offering a really great opportunity. At the same time we want to keep everyone safe.”
According to the ordinance, sidewalk dining is only allowed in the downtown overlay district, which encompasses the area of Second Street to Iona Street and Elm Avenue to Nolichucky Avenue. The ordinance also limits sidewalk dining to restaurants.
“Restaurant shall be defined for the purposes of outdoor dining on public property as any building kept, used, maintained, advertised and held out to the public as a place where food is prepared and served,” the ordinance states.
The ordinance also limits the hours when both food and beverages can be served and consumed from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
“No serving or consumption of food or beverage shall occur within the permitted sidewalk dining area after 11 p.m.,” the ordinance also states. “No cooking or food preparation shall be conducted on the sidewalk at any time.”
Downtown restaurants who choose to have sidewalk dining must maintain a 4-foot unobstructed pedestrian way at all times, according to the ordinance. Table umbrellas are not permitted to cross into this 4-foot pedestrian way.
Also required by the ordinance is a $1 million commercial liability insurance policy for each restaurant, which also names the town as an additional insured party.