See You On The Patio Information for Businesses

As of April 3, 2021, the Province of Ontario has prohibited indoor and outdoor dining. Restaurants, bars and other food or drink establishments will be permitted to operate by take-out, drive-through, and delivery only.

Businesses may continue to prepare and submit Seasonal Patio Program Applications, however, staff will not be reviewing these, nor will patio inspections be scheduled, until outdoor dining is permitted once again by the Province of Ontario. 

The See You on the Patio program is designed to provide residents a safe, outdoor opportunity to gather, dine and support local businesses. The program consists of five elements:

  1. Promotional campaign highlighting local dining and take-out options.
  2. A streamlined patio process, which will allow more restaurants to feature and use outdoor dining space.
  3. A downtown street closure, which will take place Friday evenings from 5-11 p.m. from July 2 to September 3, 2021.
  4. Late-night shopping during downtown street closures.
  5. A municipally funded animation program that will feature artists and musicians performing on Orillia patios between July 2 and September 3, 2021.

The City of Orillia 2021 See You on the Patio Program begins April 1, 2021. 

Animation Program (Performers and Host Venues)

Calling all muralists, sculptors, carvers, painters, musicians, dancers, and other creatives!

The City of Orillia is looking for local artists to add vibrancy to the See You on the Patio program this summer.

 

More information will be coming soon. For host venues and performers interested in learning more, please sign up for the See You On The Patio Animation Program Mailing List.

 Patio Approval Process Summary

Existing permanent patios that have received formal municipal approval (such as through a Site Plan Agreement process) do not require further approval unless a patio expansion is proposed. 

 

All other permanent or temporary patios within the City of Orillia require municipal approval. Applicants may request approval for patios on private property through the Seasonal Patio Program Application. Through this form, applicants will have the opportunity to review and attest that they meet all provisions, by-laws and legislation for which the municipality has authority.

 

It should be noted that while this form is designed to expedite the patio approval process, it is difficult to determine the estimated approval timeline for patio approvals as timelines for any permits or applications are greatly dependent on the quality and completion of the application and the extent of information provided by the applicant.  

 

 Patio Lease Application Forms and Guidelines

 Businesses that want to erect a Seasonal Patio must submit a Seasonal Patio Program Application.

 

Fill out the Seasonal Patio Program Application

 Video - How to Build a Great Patio
Frequently Asked Questions for Businesses (FAQs)
What is a Seasonal Patio?
 A Seasonal Patio means a Patio that is temporary and moveable and used on a seasonal basis. 
Are there different types of patios in the City?
 Yes, there are actually five (5) different types of patios:
  1. Seasonal Patios within the Downtown Area that are situated on-grade (bistro style) and located either on the sidewalk or on the street when the street is closed;
  2. Seasonal Patios within the Downtown Area situated on a built structure (such as a deck) which is located on the City sidewalk and/or street);
  3. Seasonal Patios NOT located within the Downtown Area that are situated on-grade (bistro style);
  4. Seasonal Patios NOT within the Downtown Area and situated on a temporary structure (such as a deck); and,
  5. A Permanent Patio.
I’m in the Downtown Area and would like to set up some tables in front of my restaurant when the road is closed to traffic. What is the process for this?
Seasonal patios which are placed during road closures in the downtown Business Improvement Area are managed by the Downtown Orillia Management Board. You will be required to comply with a number of provisions, including ensuring that a fire lane is maintained down the length of the street. This may impact the size/width of your patio. Please contact the Downtown Orillia Management Board for more details on their patio approval process.
Where exactly is the Downtown Area?

Downtown Area refers to the City of Orillia Downtown Tomorrow Community Improvement Plan area.  The image below provides a map of the area.  For a detailed view and information on how the CIP relates to the Seasonal Patio Program, please visit the Downtown Tomorrow CIP webpage.

 

Could I put a few bistro-style tables and chairs on the sidewalk in front of my business?
Yes, provided that you have received permission to do so from the City.  Prepare and submit the 2021 Seasonal Patio Program Application / Owner’s Acknowledgement and Undertakings along with Schedule “A” – Checklist for Patios Located on Municipal Sidewalk and submit to cjohnson@orillia.ca.
Do I need to make a drawing of my Seasonal Patio space?
Drawings are only required for patios situated on a built structure.  Drawings will be required to obtain a Building Permit for the proposed structure.
I had a Seasonal Patio last year, do I need to reapply?

Yes. All Seasonal Patios will require a new application for 2021.

I have a Permanent Patio at my restaurant. Is there anything I need to do?

No, if you have a patio that was approved through a formal municipal approval process, there is nothing further you need to do unless an expansion to the patio is proposed.  If an expansion is being proposed, it is recommended that you contact the City’s Planning Division to further discuss your expansion.

I’m in the Downtown Area and would like to create a raised patio on the municipal parking spaces in front of my restaurant.  What is the process for this?

The creation of a raised patio structure that occupies municipal property will require a Lease Agreement with the City’s Corporate Services Department.  Detailed drawings will be required which must show the number of proposed seats on the patio, dimensions of proposed patio area, width of pedestrian walkway, gap width between deck boards for the walkway, existing sidewalk, curb, parking spaces, street and any applicable items/encumbrances such as signs, stairs, trees, catch basin, and gas meter. Reflective decals are required on each post of the pedestrian walkway and therefore, please also identify the decal locations on the drawing. A detailed drawing enables City staff and others to evaluate the potential impacts, and the functionality of the proposed patio design.

 

If approval is received from the above agencies/departments, the applicant must then enter into a Lease Agreement with the City. The terms of the lease agreement include:

  • Insurance requirements (applicant must provide proof and maintain public liability (personal injury and property damage) insurance in the amount of at least $5,000,000.00 naming “The Corporation of the City of Orillia” as an additional insured and containing a cross-liability endorsement and fifteen days notice of cancellation or material change in circumstances);
  • Drawing must provide for accessibility for persons with a disability, the convenience and safety of patrons and general pedestrians, and for safety for vehicular traffic in the vicinity;
  • Construction work undertaken shall be in accordance with the Ontario Building Code and a building permit obtained where applicable;
  • Term is May to October;
  • Fees will be required as follows;
    • $3.03 per square foot of patio space (plus HST)
    • Approximately $1,455.39 per on-street parking space
  • Daily maintenance requirements; and

 

The applicant must also submit Liquor Licence and Health Unit approvals to the City (these items are not required to be submitted initially with the application).

I’m located on or close to an intersection or corner, can I still put out a patio?

The City, at a minimum, follows the same setbacks required for parking near an intersection. This means there should be no patios that impact the roadway or pedestrian traffic within 9 metres of an intersection controlled by a stop sign and within 15 metres of a signalized intersections. 

Does the City offer any financial assistance to offset the costs of building a patio? 

New patios and/or sidewalk "bump-out" structures in the City's Downtown Tomorrow CIP Project Area may be eligible for a Building Improvement Grant to offset costs related to patio construction (up to 50% of costs up to $15,000).

 

Applications for patios to be constructed in 2021 must be submitted in accordance with the DTCIP intake deadlines, and applicants must have either previously attended a pre-consultation meeting with staff from the City’s Economic Development Division, or attend a community Workshop in 2021 in order to be eligible to apply.  The application process and execution of the required agreement may take several weeks to complete (depending on the quality and completeness of the submission) and therefore applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible.

 

It is important to note that DTCIP Applications for Building Improvement Grants must be submitted prior to the commencement of any work and prior to application for building permit in order to be eligible for this program.

 

For more information, visit the Downtown Tomorrow CIP Grant Program webpage or contact Rebecca Zanussi in the Business Development Division at 705-325-4900.

Is there a fee for a Seasonal Patio Application?
No, there is no fee for a Seasonal Patio Application.

Who do I send my Seasonal Patio Application to?

Your Seasonal Patio Application can be sent to:

Cheyenne Johnson, Office Manager 

Development Services and Engineering Department

cjohnson@orillia.ca

705-325-2221

What happens after I submit my application for a Seasonal Patio?

An inspection will be scheduled for a Municipal Law Enforcement Officer and Chief Building Official to inspect the patio to ensure it meets all of the requirements identified in Schedule “A” to the Patio Application.  The patio cannot be opened until the inspection has been completed and written permission provided from the City’s Legislative Services Division.

What if I didn’t realize I needed to apply for a Seasonal Patio and I’ve already put it up.  What do I need to do?

Discontinue use of the patio until an application has been made, an inspection has been conducted and approval given by the City.  Operating a Seasonal Patio without obtaining City approval is subject to a minimum fine of $500 and a maximum fine of up to $100,000.

Where do I find the curb stops, posts, reflective tape and fencing required for the Seasonal Patio Program?
All of the materials required for the Seasonal Patio Program can be obtained at local building supply outlets.

 

Outdoor Dining Domes

  • The use of “dining domes” (outdoor dining tents) as an ancillary use to a restaurant must comply with the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU) COVID-19 Public Health Guidance for Food Premises - Red Control.
  • The size of the dining domes may result in the requirement for a building permit from the City of Orillia Building Division (705-329-7258).
  • If a heating element is being contemplated (electric, propane, etc.) the City of Orillia Fire Department must also be consulted (705-325-5201).
  • If your establishment is licensed to serve alcohol, you should confirm with the AGCO if your license would apply to the dining dome structure(s).
  • Please note that the above noted recommendations are subject to change and business owners are encouraged to contact the SMDHU and the City of Orillia prior to erecting structures of this nature. 

See You on the Patio Program COVID-19 Safety Plan

Updated April 22, 2021

View the City of Orillia's See You on the Patio Program COVID-19 Safety Plan:

 

See You on the Patio COVID-19 Safety Plan as of April 22, 2021

 Downtown Tomorrow CIP Grant Program

New patios and/or sidewalk "bump-out" structures in the City's Downtown Tomorrow CIP Project Area may be eligible for a Building Improvement Grant to offset costs related to patio construction (up to 50% of costs up to $15,000).

 

DTCIP applications for patios constructed in 2021 must be submitted in accordance with the DTCIP intake deadlines, and applicants must have either attended a pre-consultation pre-2021 or attend a community workshop in 2021 in order to be eligible to apply. The application process and execution of agreement may take several weeks to complete (depending on the quality and completeness of the submission) and therefore applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible.

 

It is important to note that DTCIP Applications for Patios for Building Improvement Grants must be submitted prior to the commencement of any work and prior to application for building permit in order to be eligible for this program. 

 

For more information, visit the Downtown Tomorrow CIP Grant Program webpage or contact Rebecca Zanussi in the Business Development Division at 705-325-4900.

History of the See You on the Patio Program and Reports

 In response to the Stage 2 COVID-19 Re-opening measures announced by the Province of Ontario on June 8, 2020, the City of Orillia Economic Recovery Task Force (ERTF) implemented Phase 1 of the Patio and Public Realm Program.

 

Two focus groups were held and a survey was circulated to downtown business owners. The resulting project is therefore built by Orillia businesses for Orillia businesses. 

 

This program was designed to achieve four objectives:

 

1. Facilitate and expedite the expansion of retail/restaurant capacities through the use of patio and use of the public realm across the City; and
2. Reduce and/or offset the financial costs of expanding private operations into the public realm for the 2020 season; and
3. Support Orillia businesses by promoting local retail and dining establishments as a safe place to shop and dine; and
4. Enable downtown retail/restaurant operators to expand their operations into the public realm while protecting space required to maintain the physical separation and safety of pedestrians.

 

The ERTF reported back to Council on the second phase of this initiative, which contemplated a potential road closure in the downtown core, as well as the use of artists, musicians and entertainers to activate the street.  

 

Report ERTF-20-02 - Patio and Public Realm Project - Phase 1 (Special Council June 18, 2020)

 

The final report on the 2020 See You on the Patio Program includes project successes, lessons learned, testimonials and recommendations for the 2021 program.

Other Resources

Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit - COVID-19 Public Health Guidance for Food Premises - Red Control

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