City of Bridgman, MI
Berrien County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Bridgman 3-2-2015 by Ord. No. 185. Amendments noted where applicable.]
The sidewalk cafe and outdoor seating regulations, as established in this chapter, are designed to allow sidewalk cafes or outdoor seating on public property in locations where they are determined to be appropriate by the City Manager or his or her designee, and to promote and protect the public health, safety and general welfare of the community. These general goals include, among others, the following specific purposes:
A. 
To attract residents and nonresidents to the Bridgman business district;
B. 
To provide an additional way for restaurants or food establishments to expand their operations;
C. 
To promote sidewalk cafes and outdoor seating as useful and properly planned visual amenities; to provide adequate space for pedestrians on the sidewalk adjacent to sidewalk cafes, or outdoor seating and to ensure access to adjacent commercial and retail uses;
D. 
To promote the most desirable use of land and buildings and thereby protect the City's tax revenues;
E. 
To provide for penalties for violations of this chapter.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
OUTDOOR SEATING
An outdoor area operated by an existing restaurant or other food establishment which sells food or beverages for immediate consumption, located on a public sidewalk or other public property which is public through dedication, easement or public right-of-way that provides seating outside of an establishment for patrons and other persons, and contains readily removable tables, chairs, railings, or planters. This area does not provide waiter or waitress service or offer alcoholic beverages. It is not enclosed by fixed walls and open to the air.
SIDEWALK CAFE
An outdoor dining area operated by an existing restaurant or other food establishment which sells food, beverages, or alcoholic beverages for immediate consumption, located on a public sidewalk or other public property, which is public through dedication, easement or public right-of-way that provides waiter, waitress service or counter service and contains readily removable tables, chairs, railings, or planters. It is otherwise not enclosed by fixed walls, and open to the air, except that it may have table umbrellas or other nonpermanent cover.
SIDEWALK CAFE OR OUTDOOR SEATING PERMIT
A permit issued by the Zoning Administrator, based upon approval by the City Manager, which conforms to the procedures and regulations of this chapter, for sidewalk cafe and outdoor seating operations.
A. 
The Zoning Administrator is authorized to issue a permit to operate a sidewalk cafe or provide outdoor seating on public property provided that the applicant has complied with the standards set forth in this chapter, after approval by the City Manager, and after proof of insurance has been provided in accordance with this section.
B. 
Sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating permit applications for establishments operating on public sidewalks or public property shall be reviewed by City staff and approved by the City Manager. The City Manager reserves the right to forward a permit application to the City Council for its review consideration. Establishments serving alcohol require approval by the Michigan Liquor Control Commission (MLCC).
C. 
All permits shall be issued on a calendar-year basis and shall be renewed annually with no fee required after the first year. Unless another time frame is specified in the permit, or by the requirements of this chapter, the permit shall allow the operation of a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating from March 15 up to and including November 30 of the calendar year for which the permit is issued. To allow establishments to take advantage of good weather, operation of a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating is permitted on a day-by-day basis, subject to the following restrictions:
(1) 
The establishment has been issued a new permit or permit has been renewed for the current calendar year.
(2) 
A certificate of insurance, meeting the insurance requirements in this section, has been filed with the Zoning Administrator.
(3) 
The operation of the sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating shall not interfere with the set up or the operation of any special event.
(4) 
All tables, chairs, table umbrellas, railings, posts, planters and other equipment associated with the operation of a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating area shall be removed and stored inside of the establishment from December 1 through March 14 of each year. From March 15 to November 30 of each year, said items listed in this section shall only be used in a manner that is not a danger to the public and/or to customers using the establishment.
(5) 
During periods of snow accumulation, the placement of tables, chairs, table umbrellas, railings, posts, planters and other equipment associated with the operation of a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating area shall be removed and all activities shall cease.
(6) 
Any person or establishment granted a permit by the City Manager to operate a sidewalk cafe or provide outdoor seating on public sidewalks or public property shall pay to the City Treasurer a fee in the amount as established by resolution of the City Council.
(7) 
The Zoning Administrator shall not issue a permit unless the fees required by this section are paid.
D. 
Each permit application for a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating shall be accompanied by a policy or certificate of insurance, in an amount acceptable to the City, including workers' compensation, comprehensive commercial liability policy, and a liquor liability policy naming the City as an additional insured. Establishments serving alcohol shall also provide a liquor liability policy or certificate of insurance naming the City as an additional insured. A company authorized to do business in the state shall issue such insurance. Required insurance amounts shall be set from time to time by resolution of the City Council. The policy or certificate shall contain a clause requiring the insuring company to give a minimum of 10 business days' written notice to the City Manager prior to canceling the policy.
E. 
Site development and application approval.
(1) 
No outdoor service of food and/or beverages in the form of a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating shall be established on public property, except in conformance with a site development plan reviewed by City staff and approved by the City Manager as required by this chapter.
(2) 
A permit application available from the Zoning Administrator for the site development plan approval shall be submitted to the Zoning Administrator. The application shall include but shall not be limited to the following:
(a) 
Name of the applicant and business.
(b) 
Address of the business.
(c) 
Address of the applicant.
(d) 
Telephone number of the applicant and business.
(e) 
Name of the property owner if other than applicant.
(f) 
Address of the property owner if other than applicant.
(g) 
Telephone number of the property owner if other than applicant.
(h) 
Name of planner, engineer, architect or agent, if applicable.
(i) 
Proposed dates of occupancy.
(j) 
Proposed hours of occupancy.
(k) 
Proposed number of tables, chairs, railings, posts, table umbrellas or other items.
(l) 
Proposed color, design, materials, and workmanship of tables, chairs, railings, posts, table umbrellas or other items.
(m) 
Proposed area of occupancy, including square feet and dimensions.
(n) 
Whether alcohol will be served.
(o) 
Copy of certificate of insurance.
(p) 
Whether permit application is a new application or renewal; if renewal, the applicant shall describe any changes from previous application.
(q) 
Written authorization from the owner of the property shall be required where the applicant is not the owner of the affected property.
(3) 
The site development plan and the accompanying application shall show the following:
(a) 
The applicant's entire property and adjacent properties on a location map with streets for a distance of at least 25 feet at a scale showing detail sufficient for proper review. The site plan shall be submitted on a sheet no smaller than 8 1/2 inches by 11 inches and no larger than 11 inches by 17 inches. Site plans smaller or larger than the sizes prescribed by this chapter shall not be accepted.
(b) 
A detailed plan showing the design with required curb extension and deck construction, relevant details and location of all temporary structures, such as, but not limited to, planters, landscaping, railings, tables, chairs, table umbrellas, any electrical outlets or appliances, hydrants, all ingress and egress, existing lighting and other equipment, shall accompany the site development plan and permit application. Public use areas must accommodate the special design needs of the disabled, elderly and parents with strollers.
(4) 
The City Manager or his or her designee shall distribute copies of the site development plan and permit application to the Zoning Administrator, Chief of Police and Fire Chief for their review and written comments in relation to compliance with this chapter and all other City ordinances.
(5) 
Conditions specific to the operation of a business may be incorporated into the permit as required by City staff or the City Manager (example: hours of operation, number of servers assigned to outside service area).
(6) 
Appeals shall be made to the City Council.
(7) 
Based upon review comments from City staff, the City Manager may approve, approve with conditions, or refer the application back to the applicant for modification. If approved, the City Manager shall authorize the Zoning Administrator to issue a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating permit.
(8) 
If the City Manager or his or her designee denies the application for a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating permit, the reason for this determination will be stated in a letter to the applicant. The applicant may appeal the decision in accordance with § 418-7 of this chapter.
A. 
There shall be a minimum of 48 inches, measured from the back of the curb or any other obstruction, exclusive of the area occupied by the sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating, designed to allow adequate pedestrian movement. Cafes or outdoor seating shall only be permitted where it is determined that the use will not create a hazard, a sight distance obstruction for motor vehicle operators, nor unduly impede pedestrian traffic. The City Manager or designee shall determine when a hazardous condition exists in the public right-of-way.
B. 
Sidewalk cafes or outdoor seating may only be located adjacent to the establishment with which they are associated. Sidewalk cafes or outdoor seating areas must remain clear of litter, food scraps and soiled dishes at all times.
C. 
Setting up a barrier such as planters or a railing to physically separate patrons from pedestrian and vehicular traffic shall delineate the perimeter of a sidewalk cafe serving alcoholic beverages. All barriers used for sidewalk cafes serving liquor shall also conform to MLCC regulations.
D. 
Furnishings for a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating shall consist solely of readily removable railings, posts, tables, chairs, planters, and table umbrellas. No furnishings, railings, posts, tables, chairs, planters, table umbrellas or other items may be affixed in any manner to City sidewalks or City property.
E. 
No structure or enclosure to accommodate the storage of accumulated garbage, i.e., shed, may be erected or placed adjacent to or near the sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating located on public property. Each establishment shall be responsible for providing appropriate containers for disposing of garbage or waste and employees shall not use City trash containers for disposing of garbage or waste.
F. 
A sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating shall not interfere with any public service facility such as a telephone, mailbox, fire hydrant, designated pedestrian crossing or bench located on a sidewalk or public property.
G. 
Operation of a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating shall not adversely impact adjacent or nearby residential, religious, educational, or commercial properties and shall be in accordance with all applicable codes and regulations.
H. 
Tables, chairs, table umbrellas, railings, planters, and any other objects provided with the sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating shall be of quality design, materials, and workmanship both to ensure the safety and convenience of users and to enhance the visual and aesthetic quality of the area. Such equipment shall be routinely cleaned, painted, or replaced and may be inspected by the City Manager or designee.
A. 
All sidewalk cafes serving alcoholic beverages shall be allowed to operate during the applicant business's regular hours of operation.
B. 
All alcoholic beverages to be served at a sidewalk cafe shall be prepared within the existing restaurant, and alcoholic beverages shall only be served to patrons of the sidewalk cafe. The consumption of alcoholic beverages at a sidewalk cafe within the confines of the sidewalk cafe area shall not be construed as a violation of any ordinance controlling open containers in a public area. The operator of the sidewalk cafe shall take all necessary action to procure the appropriate license or permit from the MLCC to serve alcoholic beverages in the sidewalk cafe and shall comply with all other laws and regulations concerning the serving of alcoholic beverages in the state.
C. 
All food to be served at the sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating shall be prepared within the existing establishment unless approved by the City Council as part of a special event application request.
D. 
The sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating permit issued in accordance with this chapter shall be prominently displayed within the existing establishment along with other required permits and licenses.
E. 
During the off-season, chairs, railings, posts, planters, table umbrellas, and other items shall be removed and shall not be stored outside. It shall be the responsibility of the establishment to secure adequate storage of these items.
F. 
The maintenance of a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seeing area shall be the responsibility of the establishment, including, but not limited to, surface treatment and cleaning, litter control, sweeping, and snow and ice removal. The sidewalk and public property shall be kept neat and clean at all times and free from any substance that may cause damage to the sidewalk or public property to cause pedestrian injury.
G. 
An increase in lighting, signage or music is prohibited, unless otherwise approved through the review process.
The issuance of permits applied for under this chapter or any other ordinance of the City may be denied by the City Manager, and permits issued may be revoked or suspended by the City Manager at any time, for any of the following causes:
A. 
Fraud, misrepresentation or any false statement made in the permit application.
B. 
Fraud, misrepresentation or any false statement made in the operation of the sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating.
C. 
Any violation of this chapter or any other ordinance of the City.
D. 
Any violation received during the previous permit period.
E. 
Conducting business in an unlawful manner or in such a manner as to constitute a breach of peace or to constitute a menace to the health, moral, safety of the public.
F. 
Failure or inability of an applicant to meet and satisfy the requirements and provisions of this chapter and every other ordinance of the City.
A. 
Any person whose permit is revoked or suspended, or any person whose application for a permit is denied, shall have the right to a hearing before the City Council, provided a written request therefor is filed with the Zoning Administrator within 10 days following the delivery or mailing of the notice of revocation or suspension, or within 10 days following the denial of the permit application. No person shall operate any sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating during any time when the permit therefore has been suspended, revoked, or canceled.
B. 
Permits will be issued as prescribed by this chapter.
Written notice of suspension or revocation, stating the causes therefor, shall be delivered to the permittee personally or mailed to the address as shown in the permit application. Upon revocation of a license, all furnishings and fixtures shall be removed from public property within 24 hours.
Unless otherwise provided in this chapter, an application for renewal of a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating permit shall be considered in the same manner as an original application under § 418-3.
No permit issued under the provisions of this chapter or any other ordinance of the City shall be transferable.
A. 
Any person who operates a sidewalk cafe or outdoor seating on public sidewalks or public property without a permit, or who shall violate any of the provisions of this chapter shall be responsible for a municipal civil infraction, punishable by a civil fine of not more than $500, and the costs of prosecution.
B. 
The City Council may establish the amount of a civil fine for municipal civil infraction that may be paid at the City violations bureau for violations of this chapter, except that all violations alleging operating without a permit and other violations in excess of three in any calendar year may be handled by the district court.
C. 
The City may suspend or revoke any permit issued, or deny the issuance of a permit as provided in § 418-6 regardless of whether or the operator has been cited, paid a civil fine, or been found responsible for a violation of this chapter pursuant to this section.
If any clause, sentence, paragraph or part of this chapter shall be adjudged by any court of competent jurisdiction to be invalid, such judgment shall not affect, impair, or invalidate the remainder thereof, but shall be confined in its operation to the clause, sentence, paragraph, section, or part thereof directly involved in the controversy and in which such judgment shall have been rendered.