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“Curb lane café” expansion passes Executive Committee, will go to Toronto Council

“CURB LANE CAFÉ – A sidewalk café that is a temporary lateral projection into the curb lane, parking lane, designated lane for bicycles or cycle track of a street.”

–Toronto Executive Committee Meeting, January 31, 2023

Toronto’s Executive Committee voted on January 31 to not only extend the “Curb lane café” program, but to make it easier for restauranteurs to apply for one.

Section A of the committee’s recommendation include directing staff to “remove the requirement for a letter of consent from adjacent property owner or occupants when a curb lane café applicant or permit holder wishes to extend beyond their frontage; and…the Executive Director may allow a permit area for a curb lane café to extend across the curb lane or parking area of an adjacent property where approved.”

Taxi News polled Taxi and rideshare drivers as well as couriers; no professional drivers support the curb lane cafés, and long-time cabbie Jafar Mirsalari recalled seeing an accident in which a person was sent to hospital.

“Just east of Broadview on Danforth, an electric scooter hit the patio. The driver was injured injured and was taken to hospital in an ambulance. This was just after the extended patios started.”

He calls the restaurant tables set up in the curb lane of a street with live traffic “horrible, unsafe, unhealthy and causing more traffic headaches.’

Retired cabbie Hans Wienhold believes the tables are not there for the benefit of restaurant patrons: “They are there to make driving cars unpleasant. No matter how hair-brained (an idea), it will be adopted by leftist politicians if it has a negative effect on private transportation.”

The Executive Committee requested the General Manager, Transportation Services, the Executive Director, Municipal Licensing and Standards, and the General Manager, Economic Development and Culture to report directly to the February 7, 8 and 9, 2023 meeting of City Council.