June 18, 2024
Annapolis, US 82 F

Buckley proposing to pay for dining tables on expanded sidewalks

Today we learned that Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley intends to provide cafe tables and chairs for restaurants along Main Street where the expanded sidewalks are part of his bike lane “experiment.”

We contacted the City’s Public Information Officer asking several questions about this:

  • Is the rumor true? Is the City planning to spend taxpayer funds to allow certain private businesses to serve food and drinks on the sidewalk?
  • What is the cost?
  • Will the tables and chairs be for the use of the public or the restaurant?

We received a voicemail back from the Mayor with some answers.


We had intended to speak to the Mayor about this bike path, but due a scheduling conflict on our part, we had to cancel. We will try to reschedule the interview in the coming days.

In the meantime, a hastily called meeting of the Alcohol Control Beverage Control Board was called to consider allowing certain restaurants to have their existing liquor license modified to allow them to serve alcohol on the sidewalks.

A request to consider a proposal to temporarily extend the sidewalk area designated for existing and new Side Walk Café Permit Holders. Location: On Main Street beginning just South East of Chick & Ruth’s Delly up to Church Circle.

The Historic Preservation  Commission believes that the City required approval from the Board, but the Mayor says that the temporary nature of the project exempts them from that approval. The Chair of the commission,

Roberta Laylor is planning to seek advice of Council to see if the commission does indeed have the authority to review.

Finally, Alderman Arnett has called an emergency meeting of the Finance Committee tomorrow to discuss this project and the associated costs. Arnett is the Chair of the Finance Committee and the topic for discussion tomorrow is stated as:

Accounting of Funding Source for sidewalk tables and chairs as not ‘roadway expense’ as previously stated.

Meanwhile, construction of the bike lane continues with the addition of fiberglass delineator posts along the length of the lane.

We discussed this bike lane last week in an opinion piece and highlighted what we saw as significant shortcomings with the design and execution.

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