New outdoor dining experience coming to downtown Lafayette


LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) - Downtown Lafayette is set to see some changes in the way people dine and shop in the comings months.

Lafayette Consolidated Government has just announced that applications are available for local shops and businesses to request the use of a 'parklet.' 

With approval, restaurants will be able to have outdoor seating in parking spaces, and shops will be able to take their merchandise outdoors. Push carts will be available as well, all to enhance the downtown experience.

"So a couple of weeks go ago, the City-Parish Council adapted an ordinance to allow for parklets downtown. So we announced this week a 30 day window for people to apply for the first set of parklets," said Carlee Alm-Labaar, LCG Director of Development and Planning.

If you’re a frequent visitor of downtown restaurants and shops, a change in the way you dine or buy merchandise, is headed your way.

"Places all over the country have done this and done this successfully, and it’s really about bringing energy and life to the downtown. One of the major goals of the Downtown Development Authority, and the folks downtown is to really increase life on the street, as they say," said Alm Labaar.

Parklets basically allow restaurants and shops to take over a parking space in front of their building, to usually add outdoor seating. It’s been an element of the downtown plan to encourage vibrancy and livelihood in the area.

"Central Pizza, we applied for a parklet directly across our front door. Currently we are waiting for the city to give us approval," said Gus Rezende, one of the owners of Central Pizza said. 

He's hoping that these parklets will bring people outside the restaurants and buildings, and into the streets beauty that is downtown..

"I think ultimately if done right, if the business does right, and the city operates it right, with the right rules in place, it will be a win, win," said Rezende. 

For more information on the Outdoor Dining Options coming to Downtown, you can visit this link.

To apply for a vendor permit for a parklet, visit this link.

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