Street and sidewalk use for business and activities
The sidewalks in the central business districts of Vancouver are designed to be wide enough to allow enough room for walking traffic at the same time as local business and entertainment activity.
Some activities require permits. Other activities are allowed, as long as guidelines are followed to keep our streets enjoyable and safe for the public.
Explore streets and sidewalk uses
Musicians, performance artists, and illustrators can showcase their talents on City streets and in parks.
Mini plazas converted from parking spaces
Enhance the street in front of your business or organization by creating a parklet for people to sit, relax, enjoy the city, and possibly become customers. Parklets are extended platforms over parking spaces that include benches, tables, chairs, and landscaping.
Food and beverage businesses may provide seating for customers on the sidewalk directly outside their shop.
Businesses that install outdoor patio seating on their own property require a development services permit.
Retail businesses can put out City-approved items in effective, eye-catching merchandise displays on the sidewalk beside storefronts.
The City encourages street vending – including food, original artwork, crafts, and flowers. Street vending can bring people together and create other ways for the public to have the convenience of street-level products.
Advertise events for free by hanging posters on the poster cylinders, installed on many lamp stands around the City.
Businesses may place a sandwich board directly in front of their store on City property.
To temporarily close off a portion of a street (up to one block) for construction or moving, apply for a street use and occupancy permit.
To market and canvass on City streets, you may need to apply for a Soliciting for Charity licence.
Organizations registered either provincially (Society Act Certificate) or federally (Canada Corporations Act - Part II) as a non-profit organization may apply for a Soliciting for Charity licence.
Political and religious activities
A free permit is required before you can place any structure or object (besides a table) that conveys political expression on a City street, or hold a religious street meeting.