Times Union: Change Broadway to Expand Outdoor Dining
Gov. Andrew Cuomo has allowed sidewalk dining in Saratoga Springs. This should turn out to be a win-win for residents, tourists and the finances of our city, provided our COVID-19 cases remain suppressed. According to most health experts, gathering outside could be considered low-risk for getting COVID-19 as long as masks are worn when not seated and social distancing is maintained.
Saratoga Springs is considering letting restaurants take over sidewalks on some side streets and creating walkways on the streets with cement barriers as safety buffers.
Why stop there? Let’s ask permission from the state to allow Saratoga Springs to use one of the Broadway travel lanes for parking so tables can be put where the parking is now. This plan would hardly impede traffic flow as one lane will remain open in both directions, there would be minimal loss of on-street parking, and the parking would provide a safety buffer for the diners. Deliveries could be made from a few designated, trucks-only parking spots. In other words, such a plan would repurpose existing curbside parking as expanded pedestrian and public space for Broadway restaurants and other businesses. Charlie Samuels, Community organizer and a former board member, Saratoga Springs Complete Streets committee Saratoga Springs