Updated: July 14, 2020 05:17 PM
Created: July 14, 2020 04:03 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- The City of Albuquerque has tried to make it easier for restaurants to open temporary patios.
There are approximately 1,900 restaurants in the greater Albuquerque area. So far, about 30 Albuquerque restaurants have been approved for temporary patio seating. Several other restaurants are still waiting for approval.
La Salita was approved, and the owners said the process was quick and painless.
"Many were tired of eating out of a box and because we're allowed to do patios, they feel more safe because the open air," said Stephanie Eddings, one of the owners of La Salita.
The restaurant is still waiting on the state to amend their liquor license, which would allow the restaurant to sell alcoholic drinks outside.
Despite the efforts from the city, Carol Wight, CEO of the New Mexico Restaurant Association, said temporary patios are not a meaningful solution-- especially because of the summer heat.
"It's just not viable right now. So, it's kind of a throw away, really," se said. "We basically have gone back to take out and delivery."
Wight says they're pushing for more government assistance for restaurants if they can't open dining rooms.
However, Eddings said the patio is helping business.
"It will help us just even that little bit, because we can seat about 20 people right now. So that definitely helps us out," she said.
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