Sara Arjmand, the founder and CEO of Formula Marketing, recently spoke on Fox 5 news regarding the expiration of outdoor dining permits for small businesses across San Diego county. The City of San Diego recently gave businesses the option to apply for a new program, which would allow them to continue operating their outdoor spaces. What is known as the new “Space as Places” permit turned what was a temporary pandemic response to something more permanent.
Arjmand spoke on this topic live on Fox 5 news, where she stated, “COVID helped all businesses pivot, and we pivoted to outdoor seating,” said Arjmand, “It’s in demand and people are asking for it.” Because of this, a majority of the businesses in Little Italy will keep their outdoor spaces, including Farmers Table on India Street, which paid approximately $35,000 to build their outdoor patio. She argues the city should have given businesses more time to apply for this new permit. The city sent out notice to businesses on May 20, telling them how to comply or how to remove their outdoor dining space, giving businesses less than three months to make necessary adjustments.