Open Storefront Program

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Building from the success of the Open Restaurants program, the City is launching an Open Storefronts program that will allow storefront businesses to use a portion of the sidewalk to conduct business.  

Businesses will be able to display merchandise, complete transactions, and provide areas for customers to line up, as long as the business meets eligibility criteria identified by the City, which will be made available at nyc.gov/openstorefronts.  

The program will be available to all ground-floor storefront businesses after the completion of a short online form acknowledging their understanding of the program’s criteria and restrictions. 

 

Sitting Criteria for Sidewalks

  • Objects placed on sidewalk must be up against the wall of the business or as close as possible

  • Sidewalk objects and activities may not exceed business frontage

  • Must leave an 8' clear path for pedestrians. Eligible businesses who can currently display merchandise as-of-right or with a stoopline stand license can continue to do so under existing regulations and do not need to certify under Open Storefronts for the existing eligible merchandise

  • Must conduct eligible activities and place outdoor objects no more than 5’ from the property line (i.e. from external facing wall of the business)

  • Outdoor objects must be at least 3' from the adjacent restaurants, or 1’ away from other businesses participating in the Open Storefronts program

  • Outdoor objects and goods cannot block subway grates, fire hydrants, utility hardware, Siamese water connection, bus stop waiting areas, subway entrances, and fire exits. Vault entrances not exclusively accessible by the business can only be blocked in coordination with other tenants. Objects cannot block doors, including entry and exit doors to other spaces, and cannot block driveways or garage entrances unless they are used exclusively by the business participating in the Open Storefronts program

  • For clear path purposes, parking meters, traffic signs and tree pits with flush gratings (without tree guards) are exempt. All other above-grade structures are considered obstructions

  • Merchandise placed outside cannot exceed 5' in height above the level of the sidewalk

  • Collapsible tents and umbrellas with weighted base must have at least two (2) sides open and must be installed per manufacturer’s instructions. A single area or area of combined / tied together tents and umbrellas should not exceed 400 square feet in size

  • Tents and umbrellas should not be used during inclement weather such as high wind condition. Sign up for DOB’s Weather Advisory Subscription.

  • Outdoor objects and goods, including tents and umbrellas, must be provided by applicant and must be removed from the sidewalk when a business is closed, excluding stoopline stands (in line with current regulation). Permanent structures cannot be built or placed on the sidewalk

  • Hours of operation will be normal business hours

Sitting Criteria for Eligible Businesses on Open Streets: Restaurants Corridors

  • Applicant must provide emergency lane of 15’. Where this is not possible on a given roadway, organizations must get approval from NYC DOT and FDNY to ensure emergency access at all times

  • Eligible businesses may conduct eligible activities on roadway up to the 15’ emergency lane for the duration of the temporary street closure

  • Bike lanes may be included in the 15’ designated emergency lane

  • Roadway objects must be sited at least 15’ from a hydrant and 8’ from a crosswalk

  • Roadway objects may not be placed beyond width of business frontage

  • Individual businesses must delineate their footprint with some type of barrier element, although these must be removed at the end of each day

  • Outdoor objects and goods must be provided by applicant and must be removed from the expanded zone at the end of each day

  • Merchandise placed outside cannot exceed 5' in height above the level of the sidewalk

  • Hours of operation will be normal business hours unless they exceed Open Streets: Restaurants limitations, in which case those limitations will apply

  • Collapsible tents and umbrellas with weighted base must have at least 2 sides open and must be installed per manufacturer’s instructions. A single area or area of combined / tied together tents or umbrellas should not exceed 400 square feet in size

  • Tents and umbrellas should not be used during inclement weather such as high wind condition. Sign up for DOB’s Weather Advisory Subscription.

  • Other than barriers, permanent structures cannot be built or placed on the roadway

www1.nyc.gov/html/dot/html/pedestrians/openstorefronts

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Downtown Flushing Transit Hub Business Improvement District
135 - 20 39th Avenue, Flushing, NY 11354
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