The Ada County Highway District approved a resolution yesterday showing their support of local business and their ability to expand their dining room seating into the public right of way to accommodate for social distancing during the pandemic. As COVID-19 has struck the business community in many ways, the requirement to maintain six-feet of social distance has limited the ability of restaurants to fill their dining rooms, greatly impacting their bottom lines.
For the past several years, the Ada County Highway District has held Master License agreements with both the City of Boise and City of Meridian. These agreements give authority to the cities to provide sublicenses to restaurants who would like to expand into the public right of way. For example, a few years ago the City of Meridian piloted a program to allow restaurants to expand dining into the parking lane in their downtown core.
Local businesses interested in taking advantage of this opportunity should first apply to the appropriate city for a sublicense. The Ada County Highway District will provide comments, address traffic safety and ADA compliance. Once approved, the application is returned to the city which will address any additional issues before issuing the sublicense.
Leadership from the Ada County Highway District and the City of Boise met last week at a joint meeting and discussed the importance of expediting this process to allow our local businesses to benefit from this as quickly as possible.