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Outdoor Dining LicensePublic Works

Outdoor Dining on State Street

Santa Barbara's beautiful weather and thriving downtown area creates the perfect atmosphere for outdoor dining.

The Outdoor Dining Program allows restaurateurs the opportunity to enter into an agreement with the City to use a portion of the public sidewalk for outdoor dining purposes.

Since its inception, the Outdoor Dining Program has been a tremendous success with businesses, tourists and locals alike.

COVID-19 Economic Recovery
As the City recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, City staff are available for initial consultations and then processing applications with you. There are currently 39 active licenses in the City with several more in the works.  We look forward to working with you on planning code compliant outdoor dining and can make certain temporary accommodations once a plan is approved.

For questions on guidelines or process related to parklets on-street or outdoor expansion into the State Street Promenade please visit

If you are wondering if your restaurant site is conducive to participating in the Outdoor Dining Program, you may request a pre-application site consultation with Mike Cloonan, Project Engineer I, You may also contact Adam Hendel, Principal Engineer,

Outdoor Dining License process
Following is a submittal checklist for your use in applying for an Outdoor Dining License for your restaurant:

  • Application Submittal
  • Outdoor Dining License Application and Guidelines
  • A detailed site plan on 8 1/2" x 11" paper. All sidewalk obstruction shall be noted and detailed dimensions shall be clearly shown. (See sample site plan.) The plan is required to demonstrate 8-feet of sidewalk clearance on State St (6-feet wide elsewhere) can be met.
  • A copy of your Certificate of Insurance naming the City of Santa Barbara as an additional insured.
  • A photograph of your proposed Outdoor Dining area.
  • A photograph or vendor specification on proposed furniture. This is for compliance with aesthetic design guidelines and Americans with Disabilities Act requirements.  Please ask about temporary accommodations related to aesthetic design guidelines through the end of the Emergency Recovery Extension and Transition Ordinance (ERETO) scheduled to end December 31, 2023.
  • Fees are currently waived through July 1, 2022, at which point application and annual renewal fees will be reestablished.

The above items may be submitted at the Public Works Counter at 630 Garden Street or by visiting and following these instructions to submit online.

Note: Submittal of an application is not an approval to set up outdoor dining. Municipal Code Chapter 9.95 governs the use of sidewalks and rights of way for dining purposes. You may not setup dining on public sidewalks without an approved plan or license.

If you have any questions regarding the Outdoor Dining Program, please contact Mike Cloonan, Project Engineer I, at (805) 564-5365. You may also contact Adam Hendel, Principal Engineer, at (805) 897-1921.

Outdoor Dining – Current License Holders
Please click on the following document link for a list of current license holders here.


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