Salt Lake City mayor signs proclamation allowing businesses to expand operations in winter months

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Erin Mendenhall

Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall speaks during a news conference Monday, Sept. 21, 2020, in Salt Lake City. A 13-year-old Utah boy with autism was shot by police after his mother asked for help getting him to a hospital and officers agreed to talk with him, police footage released showed. She called the shooting a tragedy as she called for a quick but thorough investigation. “I am profoundly heartbroken and frustrated,” she said. “It’s a tragedy for this young boy, for his mother and for families and individuals who have acute mental health needs.” (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Businesses within Salt Lake City have been granted tools to expand their outdoor operating capacity as cold temperatures and winter weather arrives.

Mayor Erin Mendenhall has signed Emergency Proclamation 17 that eases permitting restrictions regarding the use of temporary structures both on private property and in the public right of way. The proclamation also waives permitting for temporary structures under 200 square feet.

According to the mayor, this applies to any retail or restaurant activity, including retail sales, retail services, and outdoor dining.

“We want to ensure businesses have the ability to maximize their revenue while also creating a safe environment for our residents and visitors,” Mayor Mendenhall says. “It has been an incredibly difficult year for many businesses, especially small businesses and food and beverage establishments, and we want to do everything we can to assist by expanding their options to do business.”

Due to COVID-19, Salt Lake City restaurants, pubs, and bars saw a 70% year over year loss in April.

As of September, the year over year losses for the industry remains at 39%, despite many food services and drinking businesses being able to innovate with their operations and regulations.

Read the full proclamation below

“These updated provisions enable expanded outdoor dining to help restaurants serve patrons safely this winter,” says Dee Brewer, Executive Director of the Downtown Alliance. “Long term, they will also foster some pretty cool outdoor dining environments–similar to what you might find in Europe–to attract and delight local and visiting diners to Salt Lake City.”

The Salt Lake City Department of Economic Development team will serve as liaisons for businesses wishing to expand their outdoor capacity by assisting them through the permitting process, if needed.

“Main Street businesses reported a significant increase of activity during the Open Streets initiative in the fall, with some reporting pre-pandemic revenues during the activation,” says Ben Kolendar, Director of Salt Lake City’s Department of Economic Development. “I believe this is an appropriate expansion of how businesses can boost capacity while also keeping public health and safety top of mind.”

For more information on how to apply for temporary permits, contact the Economic Development team at

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