This innovative sidewalk table caused quite a stir!🍻
Brendan O'Connor wanted to find a creative solution to a unique problem. He saw that bars and restaurants in Orlando were having a hard time expanding outdoor seating during the pandemic. He came up with a solution in the Socially Distant Table, but it nearly got him in trouble with the law.
"I'd seen a lot of our local bars and restaurants struggle with outdoor seating during the pandemic," O'Connor said in an exclusive interview with Narcity.
"I wanted to come up with a fun and easy way to help them out."
So, he reached out to a local woodworker and architecture firm to bring to life the Socially Distant Table, a movable hightop bar that can be pushed to any venue.
The first table was set up at The Hammered Lamb in the Ivanhoe Village neighborhood. However, an hour after posting a video showcasing the table, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) contacted the city of Orlando.
"They phoned the city to tell them that if it wasn't moved soon, they would be sending a police officer to arrest anyone who sat at it, which is a bit overkill," O'Connor said.
The table was moved to a new spot around the corner from Ivanhoe Brewing, where it wouldn't be in violation of traffic laws.
O'Connor said that the Socially Distant Table has become a huge hit in the neighborhood, where it's getting used all the time.
Narcity spoke with Jessica Ottahiano from FDOT and was told that while they were not aware of the phone call, proper permits would have been needed to be in place for the table to be legal.
O'Connor said several other bars have already contacted him about the table.