City of Mill Valley considers limiting outdoor dining to free up parking

ByLena Howland via KGO logo
Monday, August 22, 2022
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The city of Mill Valley is considering making changes to its outdoor dining program in order to free up some parking.

MILL VALLEY, Calif. (KGO) -- The city of Mill Valley is considering making changes to its outdoor dining program in order to free up some parking.

Parklets, which block public parking spots like the one in front of D'Angelo's Pizzeria on Miller Avenue, could soon be a thing of the past as city planners look to approve a Seasonal Outdoor Business Program.

During the pandemic, when indoor restaurant space was still partially restricted, the city of Mill Valley adopted the Temporary Outdoor Business Program, which allowed restaurants to expand their business outdoors, in the public right-of-way throughout the city.

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This waived conditional use permit requirements to provide parking based on the floor area of the business.

It was also something locals like Maeve Walsch have grown to appreciate.

"It's just so nice to be able to walk downtown and be outdoors where before this happened, we were always inside all of the time and I love being able to do that, I don't see that it's impacting the parking, there's still a lot of parking around," Walsch said.

That program was supposed to sunset at the end of June in 2022 but was later extended to last until Oct. 31 of this year.

Instead of ending it completely, the city is considering a seasonal plan to last from the beginning of June to the end of October.

The key change is that the expansion of their business may not reduce the number of parking spaces they're required to have, according to their conditional use permit.

RELATED: Pleasanton forces restaurants to take down parklets for street cleaning

"I can appreciate that they're looking at it, because obviously it has to have equity amongst all of the different restaurants but I haven't found it to impact the parking," Susan Durham, a Mill Valley resident said.

The Mill Valley Planning Commission is expected to vote on this at their meeting on Tuesday night at 7 p.m.

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