The unique nature of downtown development patterns provides a great opportunity to create vibrant and active streetscapes. Sidewalk cafes, sidewalk pubs, artistic displays, artistic performances, and other approved or permitted uses of the sidewalk encourage a pedestrian friendly environment and help to create a visually attractive and dynamic atmosphere for downtown Sioux Falls. The City of Sioux Falls has developed a process that allows business endeavors to occur on the publically-owned sidewalk. These uses are a privilege granted by the City and are encouraged so long as they are compatible with the pedestrian use of sidewalk, create positive conditions downtown, and comply with the rules and standards for use of the sidewalk.
Per city ordinance Chapter 117, approval to use this space is needed prior to a person or business setting up any business activity or placing any object in the sidewalk area. Similar activities occurring entirely on private property are not subject to this chapter.
The City of Sioux Falls grants three types of downtown sidewalk use approvals:
- Permits are required for activities involving the sale of goods, sale of services, or similar use of sidewalk, except for cafes and pubs. Retailing, performance acts, and vending are allowed by permit.
- Limited Leases are required for activities that have an intense and semi-permanent use of the sidewalk. Sidewalk cafes and sidewalk pubs are allowed by limited lease.
- Notifications of Placement are accepted by the City allowing the placement of objects considered incidental to the operation of adjacent businesses. Sandwich board signs or potted plants are examples of activities allowed by notification.
Please note that these approvals are for the use of the public sidewalk only. Other licenses such as those for alcohol beverage sales, food service, or peddling may still be required.