The latest effort to city officials to help restaurants and small businesses reopen safely includes the temporary closing of Mass Ave, three other pedestrian-friendly Downtown streets and Broad Ripple Avenue.
The announcement came today (May 19), with the changes to become effective Friday, May 22.
Mass Ave will be closed from Delaware Street to College Avenue. Other Downtown closures are Georgia Street from Pennsylvania to Illinois, Illinois Street from Market to Georgia, and the southern two quadrants of Monument Circle. The Broad Ripple Avenue closure runs from the Monon Trail to College Avenue.
The measures announced May 19 include fast-tracked permitting for the expanded patio seating, which will allow for restaurants to maintain safe distancing between diners.
“We are committed to helping ensure that as restaurants and businesses begin to reopen, the safety of employees, business owners, and patrons continues to be a top priority,” said Mayor Joe Hogsett. “We recognize how critical small businesses are to the livelihood of our residents, of our economy, and of our character. We will clear as many obstacles as we can to make sure they can continue to be an integral part of the Indianapolis economy.”
Restaurants can learn more and get connected to the Dine Out initiative at indy.gov/dineout. Interested businesses must complete the application to begin operations on May 22. In addition, the city and the Indy Chamber had scheduled a webinar for establishments navigating the reopening at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday. To sign up and tune in, visit indychamber.com/events.
The Dine Out initiative is the result of extensive engagement with local restaurants and businesses, and includes staff and resources from multiple city departments. As the Indianapolis economy begins to reemerge from COVID-related closures, the city has worked with local establishments to put them in a position to recover and thrive upon reopening, while remaining safe for employees and customers alike.
During today’s announcement, Mayor Hogsett also discussed Monday’s news regarding the RESTART Grant Program, which will reimburse Marion County small businesses for personal protective equipment and other expenses related to reopening during the COVID-19 pandemic. The program, a partnership between the city and the Indy Chamber, will provide up to $5,000 to businesses with fewer than 150 employees. Businesses can sign up to learn more about the RESTART Grant Program at response.indychamber.com/restart.