Outdoor dining in Orange is being revolutionised with the arrival of modern, transportable booths in McNamara Street and Lords Place.
The booths are small, relocatable platform structures, which provide an extension to the footpath area and could be used for outdoor dining or entertainment.
Two of the booths are being installed in McNamara Street, in an off-street mini-park, next to the Blind Pig. These two will be powered in the future and are available for anyone to use. They are being placed between the existing flower beds of Jasmine, between the footpath and the carpark on the western side.
The third booth is located underneath a tree in Lords Place, taking up two parking bays outside the coffee shop Crema on Lords and will not be powered.
Orange Mayor Reg Kidd said the booths were purchased as part of the Future City project to encourage more people into the CBD.
“Any business in Orange can express interest in having one of these booths near their shop to encourage people to visit, take a seat or window shop while they charge a phone, or have a coffee,” Cr Kidd said.
“They’re portable in the sense they can be moved from place to place using a tilt-tray truck. Businesses could hire them out for periods of time.”
The three booths are wooden, raised so water can travel underneath them and they have crash barriers on the outside to protect people from passing cars.
Orange City Council’s Employment and Economic Development Policy Committee Chair Tony Mileto said the booths cost between $20,000 and $30,000 but the benefit to a business could be much more.
“Council has bought three of these transportable, dining booths as a trial, with the option to buy more should businesses be interested,” Cr Mileto said.
“They have the potential to increase the number of diners for restaurants and cafes.
“Placing powered booths around areas with not as much passing foot traffic, such as McNamara Street, encourages people to make their way into that area.
“The use of alfresco booths has become popular in cities across the world and adds a further dimension in the engagement of shoppers and general pedestrian traffic,”
“They help create a vibrant, busy atmosphere.”
The two booths to be placed in McNamara Street will be connected to power in the weeks to come.
Crema on Lords owner Arthur Aube said he was excited to see the booth installed out the front of his business.
“I’m from Sydney and you see them all around there in Bondi Beach and at the Rocks,” he said.
“I’ve been talking with the Council staff there and they asked me what I thought would beautify the area and I told them about the them.
“It’s a fantastic thing for the city and I think we’ll be the first city in the central west with them and then everyone will follow.
“The people will love them. I’m really happy with it”