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June 2020

If I had been told in February what was coming, I

would never have believed it! It’s been a long road,

yet here we are…on the brink of Phase 2! Starting

tomorrow, retail stores, outdoor dining for restaurants

and offices can reopen!

 

New York State has placed a lot of reopening constraints

on our businesses. Primary among them is a limit to their customer capacity and, for restaurants in Phase 2, a requirement for outdoor dining only. Please understand that the rules come from NYS. The owners must comply and it will take them time to get up to speed. Things may operate differently than they used to for a while longer.

 

Likewise, the Village government cannot make things go any faster, all we can do is provide opportunities for our businesses to use to their best advantage.

 

So, what are we doing to support Al fresco Larchmont? I have issued an emergency order which allows us to be creative with the use of public space.

 

We have:

  • Closed some traffic lanes and some parking lanes, so they may be used by restaurants for outdoor dining.
  • Expanded the use of sidewalks for retailers – basically a summer-long sidewalk shopping approach.
  • Created some diagonal parking near the business districts to expand parking capacity.
  • Created an opportunity for some fitness and other class-type businesses to reserve space in three of our parks.

 

All users of public space need to comply with the Governor’s orders regarding social distancing and need to apply for an expedited permit from the Village. There is no charge to the business for this use.

 

The layout of our Village’s two commercial districts is challenging, but that’s what we have to work with. Some roads or sections of road are easier to alter than others. In listening to our business owners, we have found that a one size fits all approach does not work for Larchmont. We will be making changes as we go along, keeping and possibly expanding what works and altering or removing what doesn’t work.

 

Please expect the first iteration to take a few days to complete – there are a lot of moving parts. Below are some diagrams of the major alterations being made now. Other changes will be on a case-by-case basis, as we receive requests from merchants and restaurant owners.

 

In closing, please keep the following messages in mind:

  • The time has come to show Lots of Love to our business community. If you need something, buy it locally. If you want to eat, dine locally. Many of our businesses are teetering on the edge – if we don’t come out in Full Force for them now we may see wholesale failure in our downtown.
  • Be patient and understand that this is a new world for all of us. My Mayor’s manual did not come with a chapter called “What to do after a global pandemic”. We will make mistakes, we will need to make changes along the way, and hopefully sometimes things will work out great. We just don’t know what to expect for the next few months or when the State will be in a position to allow businesses to operate as “normal”. So we all need to be flexible.

 

See you Al fresco Larchmont,

Mayor Lorraine Walsh

 

Al Fresco Larchmont