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'Street Eats' a new tool for Vancouver restaurants to get the word out

With more dining restrictions in place, the city of Vancouver rolled out a tool for restaurants to let people know the seating situation and pickup options.

VANCOUVER, Wash. — David White and his wife Elaine Frances own Hidden House Market in downtown Vancouver.

“Elaine and I just love running our own business,” said White. “We call all the shots, there's nobody to tell you what kind of menu you're going to create. So it's really the sky's the limit.”

Hidden House Market opened just a couple of months before the pandemic hit. For David and Elaine, it’s been all uphill from there.

“We've been doing takeout for the last two or three months. It's been going okay. You know, revenue is way down but it's going okay,” said White.

“Hopefully when we get to the other side of this, as many as many of these places as possible are able to remain open,” said Ryan Lopossa, streets and transportation manager for the City of Vancouver.

Lopossa has a lot on his plate these days, and now he’s leading an effort to support restaurants across the city faced with more restrictions.

Credit: City of Vancouver, WA

“It's just one more way folks can find out about how the restaurants are doing,” Lopossa said.

It’s a service called Street Eats, an interactive map on the city’s web site that's both desktop and mobile-friendly. It shows what type of services restaurants are offering. It’s free for the business to sign up and free for users to search.

“We tried to keep it simple here and just really just highlight the system they are. This is their number this is their address, and this is what they're offering in terms of seating and curbside pickup,” said Lopossa.

“I think participating in the Street Eats is a good thing,” David said. “This shows that you're in the group of people that are giving it a go and try participating with things that Vancouver has to offer.”

Lopossa says the program will stretch into 2021. The city wants this tool to help restaurants keep the plates spinning through rough times.

“We all live here too,” Lopossa said. “We all want to continue to be able to go out and dine out once in a while, and so we're just trying to do our part to continue to make that happen.”

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