In an attempt to boost economic activity post-lockdown, hospitality venues across Victoria will be utilising the footpaths and streets/lanes/roadway for additional, socially-distanced dining spaces.

While we support these initiatives, we want local governments and road authorities to ensure they are re-allocating this space safely.

Here are 8 simple road safety considerations for street dining:

  1. Can the road/street be closed to motorists? – elimination of the risk is the ideal, if possible.
  2. Speed environment – is the dining space in a low speed environment? Have temporary Local Area Traffic Management devices been installed?
  3. Visibility of dining areas – will the dining space be seen in all lighting conditions? Are sight lines to these new areas blocked?
  4. Interaction with parking – how does the dining space interact with nearby parking spaces (including loading zones). Are sight lines blocked? Are there wheel stops in place? Is there space for vehicle swept path?
  5. Offset from traffic lane – how far is the dining space from the traffic lane? Is there physical separation provided (eg. approved road safety barrier system or bollards)
  6. Access for pedestrians – how do pedestrians access the dining space? Are there new sight line issues being created?
  7. Interface with the footpath – is the dining space blocking the footpath pushing pedestrians into dangerous areas?
  8. Impact on other road users – is the dining space presenting a danger to cyclists, motorcyclists or other vehicles by pushing them into dangerous areas?

Feel free to get in contact if you would like to discuss the best-practice example of safety assurance for street dining from Wyndham City Council’s Parklets:

Photo sources: Ludo Campbell-Reid & Glam Adelaide