Draft Central Coast Outdoor Trading Specification

Draft Central Coast Outdoor Trading Specification

Public Exhibition

We are seeking the community's feedback on the Draft Central Coast Outdoor Trading Specification. The Central Coast is home to a vibrant local community who are encouraged to use public places and road reserves as a means of stimulating business growth. Council processes applications for outdoor dining and vending and for associated temporary and fixed structures. The Draft Specification will help regulate this function.

The objectives of the proposed Specification are to:

  • Facilitate the creation of a vibrant atmosphere in appropriate areas
  • Facilitate improvements to street vitality, amenity, and economic viability
  • Ensure equitable and safe movement for a broad range of users, and
  • Set out the requirements for businesses that are seeking approval to:
    • Expand their trade onto Council’s road reserve or in a public place adjacent to the fixed premises; and/or
    • Install temporary or fixed structures within an Outdoor Trading Area.

The Specification is intended to supersede the Guidelines for Business Use of Public Footpath Policy A5.09.2010 (former Gosford Shire Council) and the Policy for Outdoor Eating Areas WSC020 (former Wyong Shire Council). This will result in a single document that achieves consistent and high-quality outcomes for outdoor vending and outdoor dining, including their ancillary structures, across the local government area.

All relevant feedback will be considered before the Draft Specification is adopted at a future Council meeting.

Have your say

We invited local businessowners, representatives and community members to sign up for 1 of 3 information sessions. The location and details were as below:

  • Thursday 8 February 3:30pm – 5:30pm, Central Coast Administration Building
  • Friday 9 February 2:30pm – 4:30pm, Terrigal Surf Life Saving Club
  • Monday 12 February 12:30pm – 2pm, Online

Submissions are to be addressed to the Chief Executive Officer, Mr David Farmer, between 14 December 2023 and 27 March 2024 (amended from 22 February 2024) via:

 

Your attention is drawn to the provisions of the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 which allows for possible access to certain public and personal documentation. View our privacy statement.

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Who's listening

Who's listening
Name
Lalyn Collure - Senior Urban Designer, Strategic Planning Projects

FAQs

What is the Outdoor Trading Specification?

The proposed Specification will regulate outdoor dining (food and/or beverage consumption) and street vending (the display and sale of articles), where they are associated with an adjacent fixed business and are located. within the road reserve or on public land managed by Council across the LGA. The Specification will also apply to any temporary or fixed structures associated with the outdoor dining or street vending. It will not apply to private land nor public land managed by the NSW Government.

Why is Council preparing an Outdoor Trading Specification?

Central Coast Council encourages the use of public places and the road reserve for outdoor trading as a means of stimulating business growth and to create vibrant local communities.  This is achieved through enhancing public areas and promoting social activity. However, across the Central Coast and within individual town centres, there is significant inconsistency among outdoor dining and street vending areas, including their structures. Additionally, there are numerous adverse impacts associated with these areas including privatisation of public footpaths (through the installation of side barriers and security grills, for example), poor and inconsistent presentation and amenity, the blocking of natural sunlight and the obstruction of the public footpath.

This Specification, if adopted, will replace the two existing policies with a single document that achieves consistent and high quality outcomes for outdoor dining and street vending across the Central Coast.

What is the relationship between the Outdoor Trading Policy and the Local Approvals Policy?

Outdoor dining (food and/or beverage consumption) and street vending (the display and sale of articles), where they are associated with an adjacent fixed business and are located within the road reserve or on public land managed by Council across the LGA, are activities requiring approval under the Local Approvals Policy.

The Local Approvals Policy states that any outdoor dining or street vending must comply with the Outdoor Trading Specification. Accordingly, the Draft Outdoor Trading Specification provides the detailed requirements for these activities.

Who has Council consulted in the design of the proposed Specification?

The draft Central Outdoor Trading Specifications was prepared in consultation with the relevant sections in Council including Environment and Public Health, Community Programs, Engineering Services, Events and Placemaking, Water Assessment and Governance, as well as the Access and Inclusion Reference Group.  Engagement with business owners, Terrigal in particular, has been undertaken in relation to the preferred outdoor trading structure type.

What are the objectives of the proposed Outdoor Trading Specification?

The project objectives are to :

  • Facilitate the creation of a vibrant atmosphere in appropriate areas.
  • Facilitate improvements to street vitality, amenity, and economic viability.
  • Ensure equitable and safe movement for a broad range of users, and
  • Set out the requirements for businesses that are seeking approval to:
    • Expand their trade onto Council’s road reserve or in a public place adjacent to the fixed premises; and/or
    • Install structures within an Outdoor Trading Area.
Can I have an outdoor trading area in front of my business?

The Outdoor Trading Specification sets out the requirements that must be satisfied for any Outdoor Trading Area. If you would like to undertake outdoor trading in front of your business and you satisfy the requirements set out in the specification, an application will need to be submitted to Council. Details regarding what needs to be submitted with an application are outlined in the Specification. Only once an application has been approved and you comply with all relevant conditions can you undertake outdoor trading in front of your business.

Do I need to get a permit from Council?

Yes, approval is required to be obtained from Council prior to undertaking any outdoor trading. The Outdoor Trading Specification sets out all the application details that need to be submitted to Council as well as the requirements that must be satisfied for any outdoor trading area. If you wish to erect a fixed or temporary structures a supplementary approval will also be required.

Do fixed structures attached to the main building façade require approval?

Fixed structures attached to the main building façade, for example awnings, cannot be approved under an Outdoor Trading application. Instead approval is required from Council under the Environment Planning and Assessment Act, rather than the Local Government Act.

Can I erect a fixed structure within the permitted outdoor area?

Even if you have an approved outdoor trading area, a supplementary approval from Council is required for any fixed structure. The Outdoor Trading Specification sets out what you need to submit with any application for a fixed structure as well as all the requirements that must be satisfied for any fixed structure. This includes the design and materials of the fixed structure, heights, minimum setback and clearance requirements, engineering certification and so on. Only once you have approval and you have complied with any relevant conditions can a fixed structure be erected.

Is the Outdoor Trading Permit transferrable?

Existing outdoor trading approvals cannot be transferred regardless of the approval expiration date. However, where a fixed structure has been installed, provided Council has given written consent to the new business owner within 14 days of the transfer of ownership of a business, the fixed structure can be transferred to the new owner, rather than be removed. However, if written consent is not provided by Council, the existing business must remove the fixed structure within 21 days of the cessation of the use or trade, the sale of the business or the expiration/revocation of the approval. If the business owner does not undertake these works, they will be responsible for the payment of the full costs incurred by Council.

How long does the Outdoor Trading Approval last?

The expiration of an Outdoor Trading Area approval is the date of the approval or a maximum of 3 years after the date of the approval.  However approvals may be renewed. Any application for renewal must be lodged with Council 4 weeks prior to the expiration date. Details regarding the information that needs to be submitted with any application are provided within the Outdoor Trading Specification.

Can I renew the existing Outdoor Trading Permit?

Yes. Approvals may be renewed. Any application for renewal must be lodged with Council 4 weeks prior to the expiration date. Details regarding the information that needs to be submitted with any application are provided within the Outdoor Trading Specification.

In some instances existing outdoor trading areas that have been previously approved will not comply with the new Outdoor Trading Specification. Transitional arrangements will require all existing Outdoor Trading Areas to comply with the Specification over time. For any existing structures, Council will consider the timeframe to require the replacement of existing structures on a case by case basis.

What is the minimum safe distance to maintain for pedestrian movements when there is outdoor trading?

It is important that outdoor trading areas balance the needs of all people using the surrounding area, including pedestrians, people access shops and people entering and existing cars from adjacent carparking. The Outdoor Trading Specification sets out the minimum clearance and setback distances that must be provided to ensure safe and equitable movement. Various distances have been specified. For example, the minimum width of any unobstructed pedestrian path, distances from kerbs, distances to street furniture, bus stops, pedestrian crossings, and so on. All these minimum distances must be provided to ensure safe pedestrian movements can be achieved.

Can I have an Outdoor Trading Area on a street corner?

The Outdoor Trading Specification requires Outdoor Trading Areas on street corners to be set back a minimum of 2 metres from the alignment of the corner of any building. This is to ensure the safety of pedestrians travelling around the street corner or crossing roads as well as providing clear sightlines for vehicles using the intersection. However, if it can be demonstrated that there will be no negative impacts on the safety of pedestrians and road users, a merit-based assessment can be undertaken to determine if the location is suitable for Outdoor Trading.

Do I have to remove all merchandise, furniture, etc. after business hours?

Council’s footpaths, parks, reserves and so on are a public asset and should be available for general public use. Whilst Council supports outdoor trading in appropriate areas to add to the vitality of an area and economic viability for businesses, it is important that these outdoor trading areas are available for general public use outside of business hours. Outdoor Trading Areas can only be supported if this balance can be achieved. This is why Council does require all merchandise, furniture, temporary structures and so on to be removed outside of business hours.

Why can't I have any signage, advertisements or menu boards in my outdoor trading area?

Council supports outdoor trading in appropriate areas to add to the vitality of an area and economic viability for businesses. However, it is important that these areas are attractive and make a positive contribution to a place.

Signage within footpaths, parks, reserves contribute to visual clutter and can have a negative impact on the appearance of an area and how a person feels, particularly when there is already signage on surrounding shops, cafes, restaurants, etc. The visual impact of this is even worse for anyone that has sensory or over-stimulation sensitivity. Additionally, signage such as A-frame signs can create trip hazards. Council wants to ensure we are creating safe and attractive places to encourage the broadest range of users as possible.

For these visual, safety and amenity reasons the Outdoor Trading Specification prohibits any form of signage, advertisement or menu board within an Outdoor Trading Area.

My existing fixed structure doesn't comply with the specification. Will I be required to remove it?

Transitional arrangements will require all existing Outdoor Trading Areas to comply with the Specification over time. For any existing structures, Council will consider the timeframe to require the replacement of existing structures on a case-by-case basis. Considerations may include, amongst other things, safety, amenity, the quality of the structure, any compliance action, and the level of compliance with the Outdoor Trading Specification.

Who would be responsible applying for an Outdoor Trading Licence in a situation where a business is subleasing a Council building e.g. a café operation from a surf club?

It is always the business operator, not the owner of the building, who is responsible for applying for the outdoor trading license.  In this instance, the operator of the cafe is responsible for submitting an application to Council for an Outdoor Trading Area.  A supplementary approval would also be required for any temporary or permanent structures.   

Details regarding the application requirements are set out in the Outdoor Trading Specification. 

Will there be any information sessions?

The community was given 3 options to attend an information session- Wyong, Terrigal and online. They times and locations were as below:

  • Thursday 8 February 3:30pm – 5:30pm, Central Coast Administration Building
  • Friday 9 February 2:30pm – 4:30pm, Terrigal Surf Life Saving Club
  • Monday 12 February 12:30pm – 2pm, Online
How can I have my say?

Submissions are to be addressed to the Chief Executive Officer, Mr David Farmer, between 14 December 2023 and 27 March 2024 (amended from 22 February 2024) via:

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