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SF Restaurants Have Built Over 2000 Outdoor Dining ‘Parklets,’ and 1,000 More Are on the Way

Also: A $25 takeout pledge, and more news to know today

There are over 2000 outdoor dining structures like this one across SF, and 1,000 more are on the way.
Patricia Chang

Welcome to p.m. Intel, your bite-sized roundup of Bay Area food and restaurant news. Tips are always welcome, drop them here.

  • Robin Abad Ocubillo, the director of San Francisco’s Shared Spaces program, says that over 2,000 of the city’s restaurants and bars have moved into the parking lane, taking over city streets with outdoor dining structures colloquially known as “parklets” (even though, technically, SF’s official parklets are public spaces, not private, restaurant-maintained ones). KTVU reports that there are an additional 1,000 “in the pipeline,” all in support of businesses that can’t entertain diners inside. For some restaurants, they’re now seeing more patrons than ever, as Swan Oyster Depot’s staffer Brian Dwyer says “We have more seats out front right now than we’ve had inside.” Bay Area Senator Scott Wiener proposed a bill earlier this month that would make those structures permanent, which means that even after the pandemic, SF could have 3,000 or more on-street restaurant areas for good.
  • Taste Tri-Valley restaurant week kicks off this Friday, with specials and deals for 35 restaurants across Danville, Dublin, Pleasanton and Livermore. [Bay Area News Group]
  • The Yilan Foods Taiwanese pop-up’s beef noodle soup is such a hit that it typically sells out 45 minutes after opening every day. [Berkeleyside]
  • In Palo Alto and East Palo Alto, a campaign called Restaurant Rescue is pushing residents to take a “public pledge” to spend at least $25 per week on takeout through the end of May. [Palo Alto Online]
  • Eat Drink Play scribes Jessica Yadegaran and Linda Zavoral break down their 13 most anticipated new restaurants of 2021. [Bay Area News Group]