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San Jose OKs plan for businesses to use streets, lots to operate

Bay Area

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KRON) – The City of San Jose voted and approved on Tuesday a plan called “Al Fresco San Jose,” which will help businesses serve more customers and safely operate by using outdoor space during the coronavirus pandemic.

It’s a huge benefit to restaurants by allowing them to seat customers outside using sidewalks, alleys, and other outdoor areas.

Otherwise, restaurants would be extremely limited with how many people they could safely seat while socially distancing inside.

It’s perfect timing with summer weather hitting the region in the coming months.

The plan will also help other businesses like hair salons, gyms, yoga studios, and retail stores use outdoor space to serve customers.

This will assist businesses who comply with social distancing and other guidelines set by the state and city, but doing so will also restrict traffic in some areas and sacrifice some street parking.

Business owners will have to apply to get approved, and certain permit fees are waived for small businesses already facing financial struggles.

KRON4 spoke to the owner of Henry’s World Famous Hi-Life, who is in favor of this plan and how it will help get our local economies back on track.

City leaders will help guide businesses on how to space out customers.

For instance, building low-cost 3D barriers or putting potted plants in between people to indicate spacing are options.

This is going to be a learning process, but the city wants to do anything they can to help small businesses survive.

Cities like San Mateo and Berkeley are also looking to approve a similar plan.

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