Spring is approaching and it's soon time to think about opening or reopening your terrace, which is a definite asset in attracting customers on sunny days. Whether it's the first or the umpteenth time you install one, a little reminder of the rules doesn't hurt to avoid trouble and make your customers enjoy a pleasant terrace to the fullest.
To install a terrace, first of all you need an authorization: it is compulsory, whatever the size of the terrace from the moment it encroaches on a public space.
The request for authorisation is made to the town hall or even the prefecture in certain situations where it is necessary to apply for an AOT (Authorisation for Temporary Occupation of Public Domain) of the public domain. This authorization takes the form of a decree.
There are two types of authorization:
In all cases, the terrace must not hinder pedestrian traffic in the public space, nor must it interfere with local residents, especially their front doors.
To make your request, count 2 months to get it at the most because after this period, if you have not had an answer, it must be considered that the request has been refused.
I have a restaurant / restaurant opening project
The authorization issued is necessarily temporary: indeed, the town hall may decide to issue a seasonal or annual renewable authorization. It can also mention the hours during which it can be open. This kind of time restriction often applies in the evening: in order not to disturb local residents, the town hall may prohibit the opening of the terrace after a certain time for example.
Once the authorization expires, the application will have to be re-applied for.
The authorization must be posted inside the facility so that it is visible from the outside.
It should be noted that the authorization is personal and that it may not under any circumstances be transferred, sold or rented to someone else or to another establishment, even in the event of a transfer. The new owner will in turn have to apply for authorization.
Moreover, this authorisation is revocable, i.e. it can be withdrawn without notice or compensation for work on the public highway or during a demonstration. It may also be withdrawn in the event of failure to comply with the conditions of the authorization, or non-payment of the fee. The authorisation may also not be renewed, which will oblige the restorer to free up the space that was dedicated to his terrace.
The authorization of the terrace entails the payment of an annual fee, the amount of which, set by the town hall, is variable depending on the town, the district concerned and the number of m2. In Paris, for example, it varies between 18 and 406€/m2 depending on the district. However, it should be noted that outside Paris, prices are much lower.
It should also be noted that the amount of the fee is subject to revision at the end of each occupancy period. Therefore, when you apply for a renewal of your licence, the amount may be reassessed and changed.
You now have all the information you need to install your terrace and know the constraints. You must therefore anticipate, especially for the renewal of authorisations, to ensure that you will have a terrace at all times for the desired periods. You must also respect any constraints required by your town for the durability of your terrace. All you have to do is to arrange your terrace well and make it welcoming and attractive for your customers and strollers looking for a table outside. To find inspiration on how to design your terrace, we have selected the 10 blogs and media to follow when you are a restaurateur.
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