Outdoor dining opportunities in New Braunfels could expand amid pandemic

(Courtesy city of New Braunfels)
(Courtesy city of New Braunfels)

(Courtesy city of New Braunfels)

In the name of helping the local economy, diners in New Braunfels may soon be allowed to dine in empty parking spaces.

At a Sept. 10 special meeting, New Braunfels officials heard a presentation geared toward expanding opportunities for outdoor dining within the city during a workshop led by Planning and Development Services Director Christopher Looney.

The workshop focused on how the relaxed rules could help bolster the local economy amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Small business owners, especially restaurant owners, have had to adapt to survive with changes that will likely last beyond the pandemic, Looney said, adding the city has already been on the forefront of relaxed regulations that include rules surrounding to-go orders, among others.

An additional tool the city can implement is to relax parking minimums and maximum restrictions for restaurants, he said.


If the city can temporarily reduce the minimum number of spaces required and allow restaurants to use those spaces for dining areas, that could help bring in more revenue for those business owners, Looney said.

In other words, restaurants could be allowed to use parking spaces for outdoor dining areas. Looney said city staff are prepared to bring the proposal to the next City Council meeting Sept. 14.

Council voted to include an emergency ordinance proposal at its next meeting, and if approved, the relaxed regulations could go into effect as soon as next week, Looney said.

"It'll be a win-win for these restaurants, absolutely," Looney said. "All we're doing right now is talking about how we can be more forward-thinking, ... and I think we're doing a good job."
By Brian Rash
Brian has been a reporter and editor since 2012. He wrote about the music scene in Dallas-Fort Worth before becoming managing editor for the Graham Leader in Graham, Texas, in 2013. He relocated to Austin, Texas, in 2015 to work for Gatehouse Media's large design hub. He became the editor for the Lake Travis-Westlake publication of Community Impact in August 2018.


MOST RECENT

Tonie Taylor Salon opened in Gruene Lake Village on Sept. 20. (Courtesy Tonie Taylor Salon)
Tonie Taylor Salon now open in New Braunfels

The salon opened in Gruene Lake Village on Sept. 20.

Here are the coronavirus data updates to know today in Comal County and Guadalupe County. (Community Impact staff)
Backlog of reported COVID-19 cases to be added to Comal, Guadalupe counties' COVID-19 case totals

A review of electronically reported files in the Texas Health Trace system identified a large number of cases that were not included in daily reports given to the counties.

City Post is located at 113 E. Eighth St., Georgetown. (Courtesy City Post)
Georgetown to get steakhouse, speakeasy plus more Central Texas news

Read the latest Central Texas business and community news.

Pflugerville's testing location is operated from 8 a.m.-noon Monday through Saturday where a maximum of 300 people can be tested each day at the site. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Coronavirus testing site in Pflugerville to move and more Central Texas news

Read the latest Central Texas business and community news.

Dr. Sam Rolon is a physician for Baylor St. Luke's Medical Group Creekside Family Medicine in The Woodlands. (Courtesy St. Luke's Health)
Q&A: St. Luke's physician shares advice on flu season, vaccine and prevention

The influenza vaccine is recommended for nearly all patients of all ages ahead of this year's flu season, Dr. Sam Rolon said.

student in mask
TEA launches statewide COVID-19 dashboard for public schools

The Texas Education Agency, in collaboration with the Texas Department of State Health Services, has launched its latest COVID-19 dashboard for positive cases in Texas public schools.

Austin City Limits Music Festival will present a free virtual broadcast from Oct. 9-11. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
Free virtual broadcast of ACL Music Festival to be held Oct. 9-11 and more Central Texas news

Read the latest business and community news from the Austin area.

Gov. Greg Abbott said Sept. 17 that data from Texas' 22 hospital regions will dictate when certain businesses can reopen at 75% capacity. (Screenshot of Sept. 17 press conference)
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott: Retail stores, restaurants, office buildings, gyms can reopen at 75% capacity as early as Sept. 21

Nursing home and long-term care facilities will also be allowed to reopen for visitation as early as Sept. 24.

Courtesy Uwe's Bakery & Deli
Uwe’s Bakery & Deli in New Braunfels celebrates fifth anniversary

Uwe’s Bakery & Deli, located at 1024 W. San Antonio St., Ste. B, New Braunfels, is celebrating its fifth anniversary Sept. 18 and 19.

The new shop will be located next to BarBelles Boutique. (Courtesy Guadalupe Vintage & Co.)
Guadalupe Vintage & Co. coming soon to New Braunfels

The new boutique will offer vintage apparel and accessories.

Typhoon Texas has opened The Patio, a seasonal "eater-tainment" space in Pflugerville. (Courtesy The Patio)
The Patio opens in Pflugerville and more Central Texas news

Read the latest business and community news from Central Texas.