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Mayor Tim Keller Directs City to Allow Outdoor Dining at Restaurants

Sides with businesses, postpones enforcement of barrier requirement for restaurants with sidewalk seating.

June 13, 2019

Mayor Tim Keller announced that the City will delay the enforcement of a portion of the recently passed Integrated Development Ordinance (IDO), as it relates to outdoor dining on City sidewalks. In anticipation of amendments that councilors are considering, the requirement to erect a barrier around outdoor dining areas will not be enforced for area businesses offering this type of service. 

The ordinance applies to businesses that currently offer outdoor sidewalk dining without a barricade between the seating and the right-of-way areas.

“We’re working to make some changes to the IDO as it was written under the previous administration and until that happens, we’re delaying the enforcement of this requirement,” stated Mayor Keller. “It’s an unnecessary obstacle for local businesses that offer great outdoor seating. We’re siding with businesses and folks who want to enjoy this kind of atmosphere in Albuquerque.”

While the barrier section of the IDO will not be enforced, the City still requires that participating businesses obtain a revocable permit for encroachment into the right-of-way. The City's delayed enforcement does not override requirements of the State of New Mexico Alcohol & Gaming Division requiring a divider when businesses serve alcoholic beverages. 

“After being in downtown Albuquerque for eight years Café Lush would not have survived without our beautiful patio.  Not only can our customers bring their dogs on Saturdays and enjoy brunch, but Monday through Friday you can leave the office and walk over for breakfast or lunch,” said Café Lush owner Sandy Gregory. “We would like to thank Mayor Keller for his support of al fresco dining in Albuquerque so small businesses like Café Lush can continue to thrive.”

This announcement comes ahead of the 2019 Senior Games presented by Humana, during which over 13,000 athletes will be visiting the Duke City, now with the chance to enjoy outdoor patio dining as well as all of the wonderful local businesses we have here in Albuquerque.