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Outdoor Dining

The City of Greater Dandenong understands the immense impact COVID-19 has had on the hospitality sector and that local businesses are facing unique challenges. We want to make it as easy as possible for businesses to welcome the community safely back to the cafes and restaurants we know and love.

State Government grants for outdoor dining

Hospitality businesses are required to fund all aspects of Outdoor Dining themselves. The Victorian Government is providing grants of up to $5000 to help you set up your Outdoor Dining area. Further details are available about the grants program online.

Before you purchase any outdoor dining items, please remember that Council conditions and performance standards still apply and if in doubt, seek Council approval prior to purchasing.

It is also advised, that the number of patrons permitted (density quotient) in an outdoor area should be calculated prior to ordering any furniture for outdoor dining.

Extended outdoor dining opportunities

The City of Greater Dandenong’s Extended Outdoor Dining opportunities are designed to actively support hospitality venues safely expand their outdoor dining areas into approved public spaces, and operate within the health restrictions advised by the Victorian Government.

Details about the application process, assessment criteria and decision-making framework for approving applications and issuing a permit are covered below.

Greater Dandenong Council welcomes applications from businesses to extend trading onto footpaths, streets and appropriate on-street car parking spaces, and allow customers to dine or await the purchase of consumable goods safely and at an appropriate social distance. Greater Dandenong Council will work as quickly as possible to assess your application. 

The following outdoor dining options are available for businesses in Dandenong.

1. Footpath trading

Footpath trading allows you to provide outdoor dining on the footpath immediately in front of your business.

Apply here


Note: If your business currently holds a Footpath Trading permit, then no further approvals are required from Council to continue trading on the footpath, in accordance with your current permit.

2. Expanded footpath trading to adjoining properties

This option allows businesses to apply to temporarily expand their footpath trading to the front of their neighbouring business (on either side) with their written consent.

To expand your footpath trading, you will need an Expanded Footpath Trading Permit and written support from your neighbouring business/es, which provides their consent to use the space in front of their business.

A site plan should be prepared detailing the items that will be placed in your neighbour’s footpath trading area.

3. Kerbside car park trading

This allows businesses that meet the criteria the opportunity to use the car parking spaces in front of their business for kerbside car park trading with the consent of neighbouring businesses.

Kerbside car park trading permits will only be issued, where it is safe and practicable and supported by neighbouring businesses.

Expressions of Interests will be assessed on a case-by-case basis by Council and may require referral to other authorities.

4. Pop-up community outdoor trading 

This option allows businesses to establish an outdoor dining area in designated areas.

For this option, a Footpath Trading Permit is still  required but  Council will assist with some of the necessary infrastructure.

Expressions of Interest are invited by businesses with sketches of site-plans and information on how the space will work. This will be assessed on a case-by-case basis by Council and may require referral to other authorities.

Submit an expression of interest

Download the adjoining property extension engagement form (WORD - 20KB)

Permit fees and processing times

All Footpath trading permits, and outdoor dining fees have been waived till 30 June 2022 to aid businesses through COVID-19.

Processing times will be dependent on the type of permits being sought.

Next steps

  • Talk to your neighbouring businesses and trader groups. Some non-hospitality businesses will not need the space outside their businesses for dining, and that could be used to help their neighbouring cafe or restaurant trader to expand their outdoor dining options.

  • Read Council’s Footpath Activity Guidelines Booklet (PDF - 4.8MB) to ensure any purchases meet Council requirements

  • Safety and access - Not all streets are suitable for on-street dining. Businesses located on streets with speed limits of 50 k/h or with limited car parking may not be suitable. Consider wheelchair and pram access in your planning.

Further information and resources

Coronavirus Victoria – Guidance for Food Services Sector

Hospitality Industry Restart Guidelines


Calculating the two and four square metre rule

Maximum number of patrons’ poster

DISCLAIMER:  Note restrictions pertaining to outdoor dining are subject to the direction of the Chief Health Officer and could change from time to time.