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Toronto Patios & Cafes Will Take Over Street Lanes As Early As May This Year

And they're coming back "bigger and better," says the city.

Though it's often too cold to eat outdoors these days, Toronto patios will be taking over street lanes once again starting this spring.

The city says that patios will begin popping up in the streets in May this year — two months earlier than in 2020.

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"We heard from hundreds of operators and residents, and the overwhelming response was that the operators who set up curbside cafes, and those who dined in them, want them back this summer," says Mayor John Tory.

The city is looking to ensure that the CafeTO program, which was introduced in 2020 to help alleviate the stress on Toronto restaurants throughout the pandemic, is "bigger and better" this year.

Updates to the program will include a simplified registration process, the ability for businesses to build platforms and decks outside their storefronts, and traffic management plans to ensure that all patrons are as safe as possible.

The city is also planning to install more accessible furniture in parklets around the city.

In 2020, CafeTO helped 897 restaurants set up curbside seating — all in all, almost 10,000 square metres of street lanes were transformed into Toronto patio space

Here's to a long and beautiful patio season in Toronto this year. 

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