Having a coffee on the terrace in all respects is a pleasant habit for many people in #Liège's city centre.The tenants understand this and have long built covered terraces for their clientele. However as of 1 January 2020, the regulations are set to change. Due to some café owners breaching the current regulations, the municipal council of the city of Liège has adopted a new regulation in terms of terracing. From now on, non-removable structures will be prohibited.

"What will no longer be allowed are verandas and pergolas fixed in the ground or non removable." says Christine Defraigne, alderman of urban planning and heritage of the city of Liège. "What is allowed, however, are the flexible removable terraces as long as it respects the safety of pedestrians and people with reduced mobility."

This new regulation was adopted by majority in the municipal council this Monday. Only the PTB, Défi and the CDh abstained. This new regulation is intended to be clearer and simpler than the previous one dating from 2015. Criteria of aesthetics, safety and mobility were retained to develop the new regulations. For café owners who have installed permanent, non-removable furnishing, the new regulations, although in the air for some time, pose problems.

" I do not see the point of having a terrace if it is not to make it profitable," says Habib Zaouali, manager of Le Cécil." When there is wind or rain, if we do not offer protection, we have no clientele, without the terraces I do not understand how the café owners will get by."

Michelle Collin, manager of the establishment Le Plazaadds: " It's a disaster, after the ban on smoking, the establishment of black boxes, the work of the tram... if now we remove the terraces, we will just have to close down, simple as that!"

The communal authorities are however reassuring café owners, this new addition to regulations will mainly concern requests for future developments. With regard to existing facilities, the files will be examined on a case-by-case basis. A working group will be set up by the municipality to contact the traders concerned and assess each situation.

Source: RTC Liège

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