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Media
1 December 2020

Alfresco dining on the table for NSW

Issued by Minister Victor Dominello

Pubs and small bars across the state will be able to use footpaths and public spaces to ensure customers can enjoy a day or night out in a COVID-safe way this summer from 1 December 2020.

Planning and Public Spaces Minister Rob Stokes said the alfresco dining trial that has breathed life back into The Rocks and Darling Harbour will now be made available to all of NSW.

“This is a win-win allowing food and drink businesses to better use the public space around them will keep communities safer, support the hospitality industry, and boost the economy,” Mr Stokes said.

“NSW is leading the way in showing the world how to enjoy an outdoor lifestyle while remaining COVID-safe - we just have to do things differently. Businesses can now reopen their doors and take advantage of our unbeatable summer climate.”

Minister for Customer Service Victor Dominello said the changes are part of the NSW Government’s commitment to help local business owners get back on their feet.

“Weekend foot traffic is up as much as 77 per cent and sales up over 45 per cent at The Rocks alone since we launched alfresco dining, and summer has only just begun,” Mr Dominello said.

With the City of Sydney and Randwick Council already on board, Minister for Local Government, Shelley Hancock, said encouraging other councils to participate would allow more and more businesses to enjoy the benefits of the program.

“We are encouraging other councils to come on board and work together with food and drink businesses to help identify spots in their areas where outdoor dining could happen in a safe and practical way,” Mrs Hancock said.

Streamlined alfresco dining approvals will be available from 1 December, giving businesses time to open up their doors well ahead of the $500 million Dine & Discover NSW program being rolled out across NSW in the new year after trials in The Rocks, Sydney’s CBD and Broken Hill.

For more information visit the NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment website.