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Land use bylaw revision proposes more flexibility for Restaurant & Drinking Establishments

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Businesses, particularly restaurants may soon be able to once again prohibit minors from their business for certain portions of their daily operating hours. The current land use bylaw dictates that minors must either always be allowed, or always be restricted from a drinking establishment.

A previous version of the Restaurant & Drinking Establishments bylaw, LUB C-1100, accommodated businesses where minors were prohibited during a designated portion of operating hours with the facility use. Mayor Bill Given says somewhere along the line, the clause to accommodate this style of business was dropped from the bylaw as a result of a possible omission by the city, resulting in the mishap.

“When, over the course of the last number of years, the city updated the land use bylaw, through an oversight or some other sort of step, that type of use was scrubbed from the bylaw. This kind of thing happens from time to time,” he says

“There are a number of examples of those kinds of businesses in Grande Prairie today. Those businesses are operating because they were enabled under the old version of the bylaw.”

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The prohibition of minors in a drinking establishment is typically reflective of liquor licensing. A business where minors are prohibited is generally likely to see the consumption of alcohol as a predominant activity over food service.

The ability to allow or prohibit minors during certain hours gives restaurant and bar owners greater flexibility in operating their businesses. The proposed bylaw would introduce a Restaurant & Drinking Establishment as permitted or discretionary in the same districts as Drinking Establishments.

The proposed bylaw received second reading during Monday’s council meeting, though was differed until a later council meeting for further deliberation as to whether any revisions are necessary.

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