Philly Council committee advances bill that could turn many city streets into sidewalk cafes

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio)  A Philadelphia City Council committee Monday advanced a bill allowing outdoor restaurant service almost anywhere in the city, but members made it clear they have some reservations. 

Council President Darrell Clarke did not like what he saw when he drove through a popular restaurant district last weekend.

He and his fellow district councilmembers, like Cindy Bass, also feared nuisance businesses taking advantage of the new rules.

“Granting this opportunity without input from the district council person is a problem,” Bass said.

The bill was amended to give councilmembers and community groups a chance to weigh in during a three-day permitting process, and passed the committee unanimously. 

It now goes to the full Council.