Outdoor space policy


30th August 2022

OUTDOOR CAFÉ seating areas across Dundee could soon need a new permit to operate that will ensure they meet safety and quality standards.

Councillors will be asked to approve the new outdoor space permit policy that will cover where open-air hospitality might be encouraged, the permissions needed from the council and others, and how applications will be assessed.

Mark Flynn, convener of Dundee City Council’s city development committee, said: “One outcome of the pandemic was an expansion of outdoor seating offered by hospitality businesses which have transformed parts of the city centre in particular, creating a colourful, vibrant and busy atmosphere.

“We continue to encourage the provision of pavement cafés, bars and restaurants in the city but we must be sure that they meet the high standards of safety, cleanliness and quality that everyone expects.

“While the policy is detailed and thorough it is easy to read and there to help businesses looking to set up an outdoor seating area and apply for a permit. I would encourage them to read it and work with us to provide the best possible offering to locals and visitors.”

The seven-page document covers all aspects of outdoor hospitality including hours of operation, how to get permission, site cleanliness, good citizenship, furniture and boundaries.

Applicants will be charged a fee to cover the council’s administrative and legal costs and the rental of part of the public footpath. An unlicensed venue with up to 24 chairs will pay £200 a year, while licensed premises of the same size will be charged £500. In both cases there will be a supplementary fee of £25 for each additional chair.

The city development committee meets on Monday (September 5).

Dundee City Council

Dundee draws skilled workers from a 60-minute catchment population of 640,000 and has a local population of over 140,000. The availability of a large pool of highly skilled labour is a key feature in the Dundee economy. Flexibility in the labour force is currently more prevalent in Dundee than in Scotland as a whole. All forms of labour market flexibility - part-time, temporary employment, self-employment and shift work - are widely operational within the city. Labour force stability in the city is excellent, enabling companies to plan with confidence. Labour turnover levels are less than 5% and absenteeism averages 2%.

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