Outdoor Expansion Zone

Businesses, such as retailers and restaurants, can apply to temporarily expand their business footprint onto the public right-of-way. This is not to create a gathering or social space. Gathering in groups will not be permitted in outside areas.

Applicants will need to submit a Certificate of Insurance naming the City of Chattanooga as an Additional Insured and listing this address: 101 E 11th Street, Chattanooga, TN 37402, prior to their application being approved.

All open businesses should follow advice from public health experts by planning to manage social distancing for customers and employees, both inside and outside their businesses; staff should wear face coverings; maintain proper hand hygiene; keep surfaces and objects clean; and find ways to limit contact between people.

Permit Requirements & Guidelines:

  • Outdoor spaces may be used during normal business operating hours.
  • All indoor and outdoor seating must be spaced at least six feet apart.
  • There should be no more than 6 guests per table.
  • It is strongly encouraged to test your workforce for COVID-19. See the Hamilton County Department of Health for testing information. No symptoms necessary, and insurance is not required.
  • Provide easily accessible sanitizer for patrons and employees.
  • It is strongly encouraged to implement contactless ordering and payment processes.
  • All restaurants are encouraged to use a reservation process to prevent capacity issues.
  • Restaurants should use disposable paper menus.
  • Facial coverings must be worn by “front of house” staff members who interact with customers.
  • Limit contact with dining guests by reducing the number of visits wait staff make to each table.

Please review all resources for safety reopening restaurants and retail establishments. Each location will have unique conditions that will be assessed carefully by the CDOT staff to develop the most appropriate solution.

Restaurants and other businesses that that are interested in an Outdoor Expansion Zone can now apply by completing a Special Event Permit. Please note on the Special Event Permit that you are applying for an Outdoor Expansion Zone and submit the permit application to Justin Strickland at jwstrickland@chattanooga.gov.

For questions related to Outdoor Expansion Zones and other uses of the street under SPROUTS, contact CDOT's Justin Strickland at: jwstrickland@chattanooga.gov.

It is the applicant's responsibility to obtain, install, and remove any traffic control devices required by the Chattanooga Department of Transportation in order to safely operate in the public right-of-way. These devices shall conform to the standards as specified in the current edition of The Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices. Failure to comply with the regulations set forth as stated on your approved permit can result in a court citation and a fine of up to $50.00 per citation and court costs.

Resources for Restaurants

Resources for Retail

Reopening FAQs

Additional resources, tools, and guidelines are posted on the City of Chattanooga’s COVID-19 support website or by calling the Small Business Assistance Hotline at (423) 206-2565.