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Chula Vista restaurants with outdoor parklets are going to have to remove them soon

Chula Vista restaurants will have to remove their outdoor seating areas

Hey Chula Vista! Significant changes are coming to our local Chula Vista restaurants with outdoor seating parklets. With outdoor dining permits set to expire soon, our favorite spots along Third Avenue and beyond are facing some tough decisions. As the warmer months approach, many of us love eating outdoors, so let’s dive into what’s happening and how it’s affecting our community.

A little history about the Chula Vista Parklets

In July 2020, during the height of the pandemic, Chula Vista began issuing temporary permits for businesses to expand their dining spaces outdoors. This move was a lifeline for many local eateries, allowing them to continue serving customers while following safety guidelines.

I remember sitting out front of Vogue Tavern under a canopy during the pandemic, enjoying the beautiful weather and the chance to get out and have dinner. It was a lot of fun and allowed us to return to normalcy.

Chula Vista restaurants and breweries will have to remove their outdoor seating
Who doesn’t love to enjoy a beer on the patio at 3Punks Brewery along Third Avenue? With the warm summer nights coming up it is the best.

Chula Vista decides to remove them on September 2nd

These permits were originally set to expire on June 30th. However, the city extended the deadline to July 30th to give businesses more time. Now, the final deadline has been set for September 2nd. After this date, the city will remove any remaining outdoor patios.

Reactions from local Chula Vista restaurants and residents

Dr. Gonzalo Quintero, co-owner of Vogue Tavern and president of the Downtown Chula Vista Association, shared his disappointment. He wished for more dialogue between the city and local businesses. Dr. Quintero even started an online petition, gathering hundreds of signatures to support the continuation of outdoor dining.

Quintero mentioned they invested about $15,000 into their patio deck, which occupies three parking spots on Third Avenue. He noted that this deck has been an integral part of the restaurant for most of its five-year history. Currently, seven streetside patios are still in place along Third.

If you want to sign the petition, please visit the link here.

Cesar Corona, owner of Los Cuates Seafood and Bar, also expressed frustration. He recently invested in improving his outdoor space, only to learn it would need to be dismantled by the end of summer.

Today, I visited the downtown area and spoke with some customers enjoying lunch on the outdoor patios. Many of them were unaware of the changes. “Really? That is too bad. With summer coming up, I love to come out here to Third Avenue and sit outdoors enjoying a beer and pizza,” said Rebecca, a Chula Vista resident who was sitting at Groundswell Brewery with friends. “Hopefully, the city can work with them to extend the permits or even keep them.”

You know it’s a big deal when the San Diego news travels to Chula Vista to report on the outdoor patios. Here is the video from San Diego NBC 7.

Impact on Businesses

Many Chula Vista restaurants have poured significant time and money into creating these outdoor dining areas. These aren’t just makeshift setups; they were designed by architects, approved, and inspected by the city. For some, these spaces have been vital for staying afloat during challenging times.

The city explained that the parklets are affecting more businesses than they are helping, mainly due to the impact on parking. With public land in play, the city aims to ensure fair access for all downtown businesses.

With the final deadline approaching on September 2nd, businesses must decide how to adapt. Removing these outdoor spaces will likely affect customer service and operations, especially as many of us prefer to dine outside during the summer.

What do you think about the move to remove the parklets

Let’s support our local restaurants through this transition as we move forward. Please share your thoughts and experiences, and let’s work together to find solutions that keep our community vibrant and connected. Outdoor dining has become a cherished part of our lives here in Chula Vista, and with the community’s support, we can navigate these changes successfully.

Amanda Contreras

Amanda, hailing from the vibrant city of Chula Vista, embodies the spirit of adventure and exploration. With a Journalism degree from Southwestern College under her belt, she possesses a keen eye for captivating stories and a deep appreciation for the community that shaped her. Whether she's basking in the lively ambiance of a local dog park or savoring the joyful moments with friends at her go-to happy hour haven, Amanda's zest for life and her city shines through. Her passion for uncovering the hidden gems of Chula Vista and her commitment to storytelling make her a unique voice and a beloved figure among those who know her.