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Portland Bureau of Transportation

We keep Portland moving

Phone: 503-823-5185

Fax: 503-823-7576

1120 SW Fifth Ave, Suite 800, Portland, OR 97204

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Street Seats

  • Street Seats

    Street Seats is a program designed to enhance street vitality and support local businesses.

About Street Seats

Street Seats is a program of the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) that allows  businesses or non-profit organizations to convert on-street parking into other public uses, such as café seating or a mini-park.  Based on similar programs in San Francisco and New York City, the program enlivens the streetscape by creating spaces for Portlanders to enjoy seating and a meal or a drink outdoors, which in turn enhances street vitality and benefits local businesses. 

 Slideshow: check out these photo galleries of Portland and San Francisco installations.

The Portland Bureau of Transportation experimented with a pilot Street Seats project in 2012. After receiving feedback from community members and business owners, the pilot was deemed a success and PBOT instituted an ongoing program in spring 2013. 

Check out the below map of approved Street Seat installations in the City of Portland:   

STREET SEAT LOCATIONS ANNOUNCED FOR 2014

Portland Bureau of Transportation received 10 new applications and 7 renewal applications by the April 1 deadline.  Three new locations have been approved.  In addition to the approved locations, PBOT’s review committee denied three applicants and has invited the remaining four applicants to modify their designs. All submissions were evaluated on design quality and the suitability of the location, with a priority given to any design that provided seating to the general public.  

PBOT accepted public comment through April 30th.  While public support for the overall program has been positive, PBOT has received and is responding to public concerns about second hand smoke and sidewalk crowding. In addition to requiring that all locations be smoke-free, PBOT also is requiring new installations to leave a minimum width of eight feet of the sidewalk clear for pedestrians.  Permit holders also are required to submit operations plans to ensure the upkeep and cleanliness of the Street Seats.   

Approved

Invited to resubmit

Denied

Existing Street Seat application to be renewed, with caveats

  • The Analog Café, 720 SE Hawthorne
  • Bartini/Urban Fondue, 2108-2118 NW Glisan
  • Center for Architecture, Design Competition, 403 NW 11th Ave
  • Enzo's Caffe Italiano, 2529 NE Alberta St
  • Mississippi Pizza, 3552 N Mississippi Ave
  • Oven & Shaker, 1134 NW Everett St
  • The Portland Bottle Shop, 7960 SE 13th Ave
  • Songbird Café, 6839 SE Belmont St
  • Dick's Kitchen NW, 704 NW 21st Ave


NEWS RELEASE:
Street Seats locations announced for 2014;
program converts parking spaces into public outdoor seating

(May 12, 2014) -  The Portland Bureau of Transportation today announced the approval of eleven Street Seats locations for 2014, including three new installations.  For the first time, all Street Seats will be smoke-free, a change made in response to public comments received during the application process this spring.  

Now in its third year, Street Seats is a program of the Portland Bureau of Transportation that allows businesses and non-profit organizations to convert on-street parking into other public uses, such as café seating or a mini-park. Based on similar programs inSan FranciscoandNew York City, the program enlivens the streetscape by creating spaces for Portlanders to enjoy seating and a meal or drink outdoors, which in turn enhances street vitality and benefits local businesses.

Street Seats began with a pilot project in 2012 that was followed by an ongoing program in 2013.   Each business or participating organization pays a permit fee plus the replacement value of parking revenue, if the installation is in a district with parking meters.

The three new locations approved for construction are:  

SoMa Ecodistrict at SW 4th Avenue and Hall Street, Bonfire Lounge at 2821 SE Stark Street and Lompoc Brewing at 1620 NW 23rd   Street. Seating can be installed as early as June although the exact date will be determined by the permit holder. 

Returning locations are:

The Analog Café  at 720 SE Hawthorne Boulevard, Bartini/Urban Fondue at 2108-2118 NW Glisan Street,  Enzo's Caffe Italiano at 2529 NE Alberta Street,  Mississippi Pizza 3552 N Mississippi Avenue, Oven & Shaker 1134 NW Everett Street, The Portland Bottle Shop 7960 SE 13th Avenue and Songbird Café at 6839 SE Belmont Street.

The returning Street Seats are approved for year-round use, although Oven & Shaker and Bartini/Urban Fondue have chosen to operate their Street Seats during the warm weather months only.

In addition to the approved locations, PBOT’s review committee denied three applicants and has invited the remaining four applicants to modify their designs. All submissions were evaluated on design quality and the suitability of the location, with a priority given to any design that provided seating to the general public. In addition, each proposal had to demonstrate support from the community.

While public support for the overall program has been positive, PBOT has received and is responding to public concerns about second hand smoke and sidewalk crowding. In addition to requiring that all locations be smoke-free, PBOT also is requiring new installations to leave a minimum width of eight feet of the sidewalk clear for pedestrians.  Permit holders also are required to submit operations plans to ensure the upkeep and cleanliness of the Street Seats. 

The Street Seats designs may be found at www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/StreetSeats.  Street Seats photos may be found at http://www.flickr.com/groups/pdxstreetseats/ 

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STREET SEATS 2014 PROGRAM

Applications for new locations and permit renewals for existing locations were received through April 1, 2014.  The following changes were made for the 2014 program:

  • Maximum of 10 new locations are available for 2014. Applicants will be competing for a maximum of ten new Street Seat locations. Quality of design and availability of public seating will be two of the prioritized evaluation criteria.  Serious applicants are encouraged to seek out professional design assistance.

  • Application deadline.  The application deadline for new proposals and renewals is Tuesday, April 1, 2014. This will allow the Transportation Bureau to evaluate applications together and involve neighborhood and business associations.

  • At this time applications from the downtown core (from Burnside to SW Harrison, SW 10th to SW 2nd) will not be permitted. 

  • Design document package.  Street Seat applicants will be required to submit a complete set of detailed proposal drawings in order to be considered for approval, including a full set of detailed design drawings.

  • Community support documentation.  Applicants will also be required to submit documentation of community support as an application attachment.  Demonstrated neighborhood support for the proposal will be one of the evaluation criteria used to select submissions.

  • Design Guidelines.  Changes in 2014 to the Street Seat Design Guidelines include a reduction of the maximum platform width from seven feet to six feet.  Also Street Seat applications will be accepted for locations on streets with posted speed limits of 30 mph.

  • Café Seating Permit.  Applicants who have an approved Café Seating Permit for existing outdoor sidewalk seating will need to submit a revised Sidewalk Café Concept Drawing and sign a new Responsible Party Agreement form.

  • Renewal applications.  Applicants who wish to renew existing Street Seat installations will be required to complete a new application form each year.  In addition, they must provide demonstration of continued community support for installation and drawings detailing any proposed design changes, if applicable. 

Questions are welcome by contacting  streetseats@portlandoregon.gov or calling 503-823-0805.

 


Street Seat Permit Renewal Instructions

Applicants who wish to renew existing Street Seat installations will be required to complete a new application form each year. In addition, they must provide demonstration of continued community support for installation and drawings detailing any proposed design changes, if applicable.

Program Overview 2014

A summary of the Street Seat application requirements and permit details.

Application and Review Process

An overview of the Street Seat application, approval, and installation process.

Design Guidelines 2014

The following evaluation criteria will be used to evaluate the design submissions and award approvals.

Cost Structure

A breakdown of Street Seat permit fees.

Preparing Community Support and Outreach

Documented support by the neighborhood is a requirement of the application.

Preparing Design Document Package

Summary of the design proposal requirements.

Design and Construction Firms available for Street Seats

A list of design and construction firms available for Street Seat design proposal assistance.

Notification Flyer Template and Instructions (.docx)

Downloadable template example to be posted and distributed as part of community notification (Word doc).

Link to Sidewalk Cafe Seating permit application

Download the information/application packet to apply for outdoor cafe seating on the proposed Street Seat.

Sample Encroachment Permit (.pdf)

Sample Encroachment Permit

Portland Street Seat Photos

A collection of photos of Portland's Street Seat installations.

Contact Us

Staff contact information.

Application Package 2014 (.pdf)

Download instructions and application form