FREDERICK, Md. (WDVM) — The city of Frederick recently announced that its pop-up outdoor dining program will end on September 14, 2021. The city quickly received backlash from residents objecting to outdoor dining ending.
Mayor Michael O’Connor is now putting out a request asking the Board of Aldermen to extend outdoor dining.
Some residents from Frederick expressed to WDVM they do not want outdoor dining to end. They explained that it allowed for social distancing and made customers comfortable enough to provide restaurants with their business.
“The outdoor dining situation is one that we just need to keep in Frederick, it makes sense businesses love it and residents love it. It will also help keep on small businesses going. This needs to be a permanent thing,” said Frederick resident Chris Sparks.
“After hearing from many in the community who do not feel comfortable returning to our downtown core unless outside opportunities exist, I am asking the Board of Aldermen to adjust the pop-up dining ordinance to align with the City’s State of Emergency. By doing so, we can ensure that our actions are tied to our public health metrics and not the State’s as a whole,” said Mayor O’Connor.
However, others in the community say outdoor dining parking restrictions, street closures and parklets make it harder for some people to use the downtown amenities.
Mayor O’Connor expressed he is working to satisfy both sides. His statement read:
“I also know that others in the community see parklets and other dining alterations as barriers to the complete use of our downtown amenities. In fact, some restaurateurs have already requested the early removal of their parklets. The variety of opinions, like many things we do, is real, and the concerns I am hearing on all fronts are valid. Our job is to strike the appropriate balance between these competing interests.”
Residents can expect an update regarding outdoor dining soon.