Warm Weather Brings a Fight Over Sidewalk Space to Toronto

Outdoor seating is a sign of a vibrant city. But in Toronto, neighbor complaints and conflicting regulations conspire to constrain the construction and operation of such spaces along city sidewalks, explains Valerie Hauch.

"Last year, the City of Toronto recorded 270 complaints related to outdoor patios, some dealing with noise," notes Hauch. "And then there’s the loss of precious sidewalk space, squeezing out pedestrians, moms with strollers, seniors on mobility scooters or parents with children in tow."

"Vibrant patios are one of the drawing cards of 'leading cities’ around the world, says Richard Gabriele, chair of the Beach Business Improvement Area." Yet in some areas of the city getting approval for such spaces is "almost impossible," due to neighbor opposition.

“We need to have as many patios as possible," adds Gabriele. "They’re important. When you’re inside for six months of the year, you just want to go outside for a few hours and sit.’’

Full Story: Restaurant patios spark clashes over noise and loss of sidewalk space


Prepare for the AICP* Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $245

Essential Readings in Urban Planning

Planning on taking the AICP* Exam? Register for Planetizen's AICP * Exam Preparation Course to save $25.

Create Your Own Paper Block City

Urban Fold is an all-inclusive kit that allows anyone to build the city of their dreams with a few simple folds.
Grids and Guide Red book cover

Grids & Guides

A notebook for visual thinkers. Available in red and black.