The scene outside Lutèce and the George Town Club over the weekend was absolutely lovely. Sitting in comfortably warm mid-autumn weather and underneath jaunty umbrellas, patrons enjoyed tasty lunch al fresco. And GM was struck with one clear thought: we could’ve been doing this all along.
Covid is forcing restaurants to explore outdoor options, and some, like here, are doing it better than others. But there was no good reason not to be trying out ideas like this even without the backdrop of a deadly pandemic.
The city has dropped the ball in handling the virus. It opened indoor dining and gyms way too early and fast. And it failed to take advantage of the massive reduction in auto traffic in the spring to reassign more street space to non-motorized travel. But Streateries were one thing they got right. And they ought to continue when (hopefully) we tackle this.
Hopefully it will take a lesson from this, though. It should not have taken such a traumatic event to realize that we don’t have to keep doing things the same way and a more lovely future is possible.