Caz Village Board looks to draft sidewalk codes

— The village of Cazenovia is one step closer to defining a set list of regulations for local business owners to follow when looking to include tables, chairs and other items on the sidewalk outside their stores.

At the Nov. 5 Cazenovia Village Board meeting, trustees solicited public input, and presented a draft of possible guidelines. As the board looks to finalize the codes, the discussion will continue at the Dec. 3 meeting and become communal when a public hearing is conducted before the January meeting of the village board.

“In an effort to provide an inviting downtown environment for customers the village hereby amends the current [Cazenovia] Village Code to allow certain privately owned items on the sidewalk,” Trustee Peggy Van Arnam read from the list of potential regulations. “From May 1 to Nov. 1, vendors may place small tables and chairs directly in front of or attached to the front of the building owned or leased by them, provided they do not obstruct pedestrian flow. They should be tasteful and in keeping with the streetscape of a 19th century village.”

During this summer, a number of colorful tables and chairs were allowed to be placed outside businesses on Albany Street, as a sort of social experiment, hoping to entice visitors and residents to spend more time enjoying downtown Cazenovia.

“I was very pleased to see these different colored tables and chairs in front of the shops. They were very attractive and inviting,” said village resident Pringle Symonds. “I think it added a very cheerful and pleasant aspect to Albany Street.”

Codes currently exists regulating village eateries’ abilities to provide outdoor seating, however questions arose whether pedestrians would be able to eat at the tables outside various retail stores, and if restaurants shall be allowed to put out a table. Additional questions were brought up regarding whether or not the tables and chairs need to be removed form the sidewalk at night and who is responsible for doing so.

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