East Hampton Moves To Outdoor Dining

Family Breakfast at John's Pancake House in Montauk
Restaurants will be allowed to expand onto Main Street in downtown Montauk if town has its way. Seen here is a recent photo of outdoor dining by John’s Pancake House.
T.E. McMorrow

The Town of East Hampton is moving aggressively to enable restaurants to expand seating areas onto the public right of way, as restaurants reopen after the COVID-19 shutdown. This action is being carried out on at least two tracks.

One track is a plan to close Main Street in downtown Montauk completely to vehicular traffic from South Embassy Street to South Edison Street, one day each week as part of its pilot program. Eastbound traffic would be diverted one block further east from South Embassy to South Elmwood Avenue, which would be one way. Westbound traffic would be diverted at South Edison up to South Euclid Avenue.

That proposal is still in the discussion stage, though Town Supervisor Peter Van Scoyoc has indicated that the town is going to move rapidly to allow its restaurants to function outdoors.

Another track the town is taking is an application it has made to the New York State Department of Transportation to allow restaurants in Amagansett and Montauk to use public right of way for customers. An approval from the DOT is required before the town can act on the proposal.

“We received the guidance and the application was finalized on Thursday of last week,” Van Scoyoc said at the Town Board’s meeting June 16. “That application was finalized and sent off yesterday,” he said. “We think that it is important to continue to offer outdoor dining throughout the town as expeditiously as possible. As of Wednesday, June 10, outdoor dining was allowed to begin within private properties.”

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