Posted tagged ‘sidewalk cafes’

Midlands & Wonderland told Dogs Not Allowed! Who’s Next?

September 20, 2017

Andy sitting outside the entrance of Midlands, which has been informed that dogs are no longer permitted (Photo from Midlands Facebook page).

Following last week’s news that the Department of Health (DOH) visited Wonderland and informed them that dogs were no longer allowed anywhere on the premises, yesterday I was informed that the DOH visited the Midland’s and delivered the same message. This is Nuts! It appears to be a sustained DOH effort that will put all dog-friendly summer gardens and sidewalk cafes at risk if not addressed quickly — a prospect that I dread.

As a Ward 1 resident and someone who has patronized both Wonderland and Midlands, I find this recent engagement from the DOH unwelcomed. If it is based in District law, as they’ve stated, that law should be reviewed and amended to permit businesses the option of offering dog-friendly outdoor spaces or not. In my experience, these spaces have not been a problem. Neighboring Arlington, in fact, went so far as to ament their laws to allow dogs at restaurants in 2013. There is no reason that District law shouldn’t follow that example.

To highlight the lunacy of this, outdoor spaces are subject to the elements. That isn’t just dust, pollen, and rain. It is also mosquitoes, other insects, birds and occasionally rats of which we have plenty. So banning dogs from outdoor eating spaces really doesn’t make them healthier or safer — it just makes them less friendly and community serving.

I have already contacted the Mayor’s office and am seeking a solution.

Florida Avenue Grill Planning to Add Outdoor Seating

April 16, 2015
The Florida Avenue Grill. Photo by flickr user Mr.TinDC.

The Florida Avenue Grill. Photo by flickr user Mr.TinDC.

At last night’s ANC 1B Transportation Committee, the owners of the Florida Avenue Grill presented a proposal for an outdoor cafe and sought an endorsement from the committee — which they ultimately received. It will need to be reviewed by the full ANC prior to becoming official.

Imar Hutchins, who has owned the grill since 2005, presented his plan that would included four two-tops along the Florida Avenue side of the building and a larger area along 11th Street that would include four four-tops and a twelve seat community table (see plan below) — for a total of 36 additional seats.

The Florida Avenue Grill has been in business since 1944, and you can read their history from the Grill’s Web site. The addition of a sidewalk cafe should only be a positive for both the restaurant and the surrounding community.

Florida Avenue Grill cafe(Florida Avenue Grill’s proposed outdoor seating configuration, showing outdoor seating for 36 diners.)

Z Burger Public Space Application Approved by the Public Space Committee

May 27, 2012

Z-Burger will be located in the former Tivoli Theater

Z Burger’s application for a sidewalk cafe permit at 14th Street and Park Rd, NW, was heard on the evening of May 24th by the District’s Public Space Committee (PSC). Z Burger’s pubic space application has been under review for nearly a year, first coming before ANC 1A in July 2011.

According to an email send out by Commissioner Laina Aquiline (1A 05) on the Columbia Heights listserv, below is the outcome of the PSC’s review of the application.

Z Burger’s application for a sidewalk cafe was approved contingent upon the following conditions (please note: this is not the specific language used by the committee, but a summation):

1)  Z Burger will choose furniture that is more consistent with the furniture at other restaurants in the Columbia Heights Public Realm, subject to the approval of the Office of Planning.

2) The layout of the sidewalk cafe as applied for by Z Burger will remain the same, except for the removal of a four-top table (the middle of the three tables to the left (west) of the granite bench) and the handicap four-top table adjacent will be shifted to the left (west), in the former table’s place, allowing greater access to the granite bench.

3) Z Burger will only have a fence that runs parallel to Park Rd.  There will be no fence enclosing the bench or on either the east or west sides of the cafe.

I have attached a copy of Z Burger’s plan.  You will have to mentally make the modifications to the plan as approved by the PSC.  The photo of the fence attached is what I believe PSC approved.  When I receive a final version of the committee’s decision, including images of the fence, I will provide it.


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