St. Petersburg may allow restaurants and stores expand to the streets

Mayor Rick Kriseman is asking business leaders on Central Avenue and Beach Drive if they would like the city to allow restaurants and retail stores to expand into the parking spaces on the streets. 
Kriseman said the city sent business leaders a survey asking them if they like the idea. 

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“If the business community thinks this will help them economically then great it’s a win-win,” Kriseman explained. 

Maximum capacity at inside restaurants and retail stores is capped at 25 percent, but outside there’s no limit as long as everyone is spread six feet apart.

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Jarrett Sabatini is preparing to reopen Intermezzo Coffee & Cocktails Thursday after the pandemic forced them to close for three weeks. 

“If it’s short term it doesn’t bother me,” he said. “I think because people are excited to get out I think.”

Turning parts Central Avenue into a pedestrian mall has been floated before, but the hang-up is always on parking. 

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St. Pete is already letting restaurants expand dining into their private parking lots.