87% of N.Y.C. Bars and Restaurants Fell Short on Rent

By Juliana Kim

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It’s Wednesday.

Weather: Sunny, windy and warmer. High in the upper 70s.

Alternate-side parking: In effect until Monday (Yom Kippur). Read about the amended regulations here.

From afar, New York City’s outdoor dining program has looked like a hit. Seemingly overnight, restaurant rows sprang up on sidewalks and streets, and patrons at some establishments encountered long wait times for socially distanced tables and a bustling atmosphere.

But a report released this week by the New York City Hospitality Alliance tells a different story: In a survey of more than 450 restaurants, bars and nightclubs, all but a few dozen said they could not pay their full August rent.

Soon, restaurateurs will be able to offer some indoor dining and perhaps add a coronavirus surcharge to patrons’ bills. Still, the report is telling, and worries over a major lifeline in the city are looming large.

[Read more: Nine of 10 restaurants and bars in New York City can’t pay full rent.]

Here’s what else you need to know.

Many restaurants appear to be hanging by a thread.

The city’s outdoor dining program and federal financial aid have not been much more than a bandage during the coronavirus crisis, my colleague Sharon Otterman has reported.

Less than half of restaurants and bars are taking part in outdoor dining, according to Mr. Rigie. And Ms. Otterman found that even establishments with sidewalk tables and canopies were operating at a fraction of their seating capacity.

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