You need a Streetery License to provide outdoor seating in a parking lane in front of your restaurant.
Your food business may be eligible for a streetery if it:
- Has three or more tables for indoor dining.
- Is located in an authorized area of the city in accordance with the Philadelphia Code Section 9-215 or you have an ordinance from City Council.
The Department of Licenses and Inspections (L&I) issues this license.
There are limits on where a streetery can be placed. A streetery:
- Must be in the parking lane directly abutting the licensed restaurant.
- Can’t reduce vehicle clearance in any part of the right-of-way to less than 12 feet.
- Can’t be within:
- 5 feet of any manholes, water inlets, other utility or ventilation access points.
- 15 feet of a fire hydrant.
- 20 feet of a crosswalk, pedestrian curb cut, or transit stop.
- 30 feet of a flashing signal, stop sign, yield sign, or traffic-control signal.
Refer to the Philadelphia Streetery License Guide for additional placement requirements.
If you want to place seating on a public sidewalk, you should apply for a Sidewalk Cafe License instead.
Before you apply for a Streetery License, you’ll need to complete the Department of Streets pre-requisite approval application.
If the streetery includes a structure, the Department of Streets will send your application to the Art Commission for their approval.
Once you have the preapprovals you need, you can apply for a Streetery License.
As part of the process, you’ll need to provide supporting documentation. You may also need to have other permits, licenses, and registrations.
If the streetery will include a structure with an overhead covering or at least one side over 48 inches tall, you must have a Building Permit.
You can’t have a streetery structure in the special flood hazard area.
For construction requirements, refer to Code Bulletin B-2201.
Licenses and registrations
You must have the licenses and registrations necessary to operate your food business. This includes:
- Business Income and Receipts Tax ID (BIRT)
- Commercial Activity License
- Food Preparation and Serving License
You must be current on all City taxes.
Between 10 and 30 days before you apply for the license, you must print and post a public notice on all street-facing sides of your building. The notice must:
- Be posted in a conspicuous location in a window or door on all street-facing sides of your building.
- Remain in place until the application is approved or denied.
A non-refundable application fee of $200 is applied toward the license fee. The balance of the license fee is due once your application is approved.
If you renew your license more than 60 days after the due date, you will be charged 1.5% of the license fee for each month since the license expired.
Applications are reviewed within five business days.
If the application isn’t approved, you will receive an email stating what is missing or required.
License renewals and amendments
Renewing your license
This license must be renewed annually. You can renew online through eCLIPSE.
To renew your license, you must:
- Be current on all City taxes
- Have proof of an active insurance policy
- Certify that the streetery and any associated structure are in good condition.
Modifying a streetery
Before you make any modifications to an approved streetery, you must request a license amendment using eCLIPSE. It must include a new Notice of Requisite Approval from the Department of Streets. Refer to How to amend a business license in eCLIPSE for step-by-step instructions.
You cannot submit modifications with a renewal application.