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​Patios Everywhere Program

The City introduced the Patios Everywhere Program for the summer of 2020. This program is in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and is intended to support local restaurants by providing flexibility to restaurant owners while at the same time ensuring safety standards and measures remain in place.

Patio permits issued under the Patios Everywhere program have been extended until November 30, 2020. Permit holders are asked to proactively address any safety and parking issues that may ensue as the weather begins to turn should they continue to operate a patio during an extended patio season. If there is snow or ice weather conditions the patios shall be removed upon 48 hours’ notice from the City.

The City is working to protect the local economy and assist businesses with the supports needed to navigate these times. Visit Business Information & Support During COVID-19 for more information.

Purpose & Background

The Patios Everywhere Program is intended to address patios that are outside of the Business Improvement Area (BIA) / City Centre.

The COVID-19 pandemic has limited restaurants to takeout services only since the mid-March 2020. As the restrictions on restaurant operations ease, restaurants are anticipated to be impacted by safety measures required to address such matters as physical distancing in a restaurant setting. It is anticipated that this will result in a reduced patron capacity. With the warmer weather, restaurants' use of patios and refreshment vehicles will help distribute capacity while meeting physical distancing measures.


The City will review Patio Everywhere applications and design concepts from businesses to ensure universal accessibility, public safety (including Fire and separation from traffic) and the streetscape experience are enhanced and not negatively impacted by the introduction of a patio. All applications are required to comply with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA).

Existing, legal restaurants can take advantage of warmer weather by offering outdoor dining experiences. The duration of patio season typically runs from April 15th to October 15th. The Business Licensing (General) By-law (City By-Law 2006-266, as amended) will not apply for the 2020 patio season and will resume after October 15, 2020.

The requirements for refreshment vehicles include the following operating criteria:

  • No person shall stop, park or otherwise carry on business from a motorized refreshment vehicle for the purpose of selling or offering for sale any refreshments or product at a distance of less than 50 feet from any intersection, unless authorized by the City to do so.
  • No person shall obstruct traffic in any way on any street.
  • No person shall operate a motorized refreshment vehicle within any Park unless authorized to do so by the Development Services Department.
  • Refreshment vehicles cannot operate after 11pm.

In addition, Patio’s will have to comply with the Guidelines set out by the Simcoe District Muskoka Health Unit. For more information please visit: COVID-19 Public Health Guidance for Reopening a Food Premise for Outdoor Dinning

Application Process: Patios

The process to establish a patio consists of the following steps:

  1. Apply online through the City’s APLI portal Select “Exemption from full site plan approval" as the application type.
  2. Upload all required documentation (more detail is available in the Staff Report):
    • Site Plan,
    • Health Certificate of Inspection,
    • Demonstration of an application for a Liquor License, if applicable,
    • City of Barrie Business License for main restaurant- note that a non-licensed patio can proceed prior to obtaining a liquor license as a means of opening faster,
    • Letter from the property owner authorizing the proposed patio use,
    • Copy of Current Liability Insurance,
    • General Liability Insurance from an insurer licensed in the Province of Ontario for $2,000,000 per occurrence with an aggregate limit of no less than $5,000,000 to the Corporation of the City of Barrie against any liability for property damage or personal injury, negligence including death which may arise from the applicants operations under this agreement. The Corporation of the City of Barrie must be included as an “Additional Named Insured”. The Commercial General Liability shall contain Cross Liability and Severability Clauses and Products & Completed Operations coverage including a standard contractual liability endorsement.
  3. Arrange for inspections by City of Barrie staff (Zoning, Police, Fire)

Application Process: Refreshment Vehicles

The process to apply consists of the following steps:

  1. Apply online through the City’s APLI portal Select “Exemption from full site plan approval" as the application type.
  2. Upload all required documentation:
    • Health Certificate,
    • Vehicle Identification Number,
    • Ontario License Plate # / Ownership,
    • Vehicle Safety Standards Certificate,
    • Propane Inspection Certificate (Where Applicable),
    • Copy of Current Liability Insurance.

If you require assistance please contact available staff by emailing

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I apply in person?

The program is designed to support an online application submission and issuance of approvals to help maintain physical distancing measures.

How do I apply online?

Applications can be submitted through the City’s online portal Choose "Exemption from Full Site Plan approval" and clearly state the proposal is for a patio or a refreshment vehicle in the application description.

What is the purpose of this program?

This program will support local restaurants. The additional patio space across the City would provide options to create public spaces and to safely adapt during the COVID-19 pandemic.

What are the costs?

The City of Barrie fees for the 2020 Patios Everywhere Program application process has been waived.

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