Nelson city council has decided to allow the owners of the Savoy Hotel to construct the largest street patio in town. But its size will be on a trial basis, to be evaluated after a year.
The pilot patio will occupy four parking stalls, one more than is allowed by current city policy. It would accommodate up to 60 people.
The application to use four parking stalls created considerable discussion around the council table. Does the city want to further reduce the number of parking spaces? Will the patrons of the probationary patio create too much noise for the residential neighbours or discourage new residential development in the neighbourhood? Will the patio be precedent-setting, causing other restaurants to want to expand also? Will it contribute positively to the vibrant residential-commercial mix envisioned for that area in the city’s official community plan?
Savoy owner Jimmy Bundschuh was present at the meeting and agreed with the one-year compromise put forward by councillor Bob Adams. Bundschuh said if the patio proves problematic after a year, it could be scaled back to occupy only three parking spaces.
The one-year agreement will be incorporated into the Savoy’s business licence.