Mayor John Tory announced that licensed street food vendors, including food trucks and ice cream trucks, are allowed to resume operations in the city as of Wednesday. All vendors will be expected to maintain physical distancing requirements and provide health and safety measures for their staff, Tory said.
“This change comes just in time for the summer vending season,” Tory said.
People who buy food from the trucks should maintain two metres of distance from others while waiting in line.
De Villa said the risk of COVID-19 is “significantly reduced” when people are outdoors.
The city has licensed 177 non-motorized food carts and 325 motorized refreshment vehicles, including 75 hot dog carts.
As for restaurants and bars, the city is working with the province on what Tory calls a “patio plan” that would allow establishments to increase the number of tables outside while allowing patrons and staff to maintain physical distancing. Details are to be released soon, he said.
“We are working with the province and public health to figure out both a timeline and under what conditions these businesses can reopen their dining areas safely and we are continuing to work on a plan to help open up more patio space for restaurants and for bars,” Tory said.
“We are in active discussions with the province on some of the regulatory aspects of that patio plan and anticipate providing more details to you in the next few days.”
City to expand ActiveTO this weekend
Tory said the city will close sections of three major roads this weekend as part of its ActiveTO program. The closures mean more than 10 kilometres of roads will be available for walking, running and biking. The Lake Shore Boulevard East closure will be extended east to Leslie Street.
ActiveTO gives residents a chance to exercise outdoors while still maintaining physical distancing.
The following roads will be closed from this Saturday at 6 a.m. until this Sunday at 11 p.m.:
- Eastbound lanes of Lake Shore Boulevard West from Windermere Avenue to Stadium Road. As a result, the eastbound Gardiner Expressway off-ramp to Lake Shore Boulevard West (exit #146) will be closed.
- Eastbound lanes of Lake Shore Boulevard East from Leslie Street to just south of Woodbine Avenue to Kew Beach Avenue.
- Bayview Avenue from Mill Street to Rosedale Valley Road.
- River Street from Gerrard Street East to Bayview Avenue.
GTHA mayors, chairs call for more mobile testing
Meanwhile, mayors and chairs from the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area, who met this week, are calling on the provincial government for more widespread use of mobile testing to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Tory said the mayors and chairs also discussed the state of municipal finances and the issue of reopening regionally.
“Now, we need the federal and provincial governments to move quickly to address the urgent financial situations cities face. Time is of the essence,” the mayors and chairs said in a news release.