It’s the thought that counts. Just as some are finding the health and economic issues around staying open aren’t worth it, City Hall is rolling out a new service to promote Seattle’s food and drink economy including more than restaurants, bars, cafes, and breweries still providing takeout and delivery around Capitol Hill:
Mayor Jenny A. Durkan today announced the City of Seattle’s new #SupportSeattleSmallBiz map, which helps residents find small businesses providing takeout or delivery in their neighborhood. The map allows users to search for open small businesses in their neighborhood and navigate directly to a business’ website or third-party delivery service page. The map is part of the City’s #SupportSeattleSmallBiz campaign, which asks residents to post pictures and videos from their favorite Seattle restaurants, bars, and cafes that are doing delivery, to-go, and drive-through with #SupportSeattleSmallBiz and #WeGotThisSeattle, and tag @SeattleEconomy.
“City staff are working to add these locations to the map as quickly as possible,” the press release from Mayor Jenny Durkan’s office reads.
“At the City, we’re doing everything we can locally to support our small businesses during this unprecedented moment in history,” Durkan says in the announcement. “We’ve identified millions of dollars to invest directly in our most vulnerable small businesses and are working with our partners across government and in the private sector help many who are struggling. With many of our neighborhood restaurants still open, we can support our small businesses by ordering pickup or delivery during this time. I’m grateful to our community partners who helped shape our map and make it a reality.”
The map joins a package of initiatives at Seattle City Hall to help small businesses weather the COVID-19 response including deferred utility payments, a temporary moratorium on evictions, temporary restaurant loading zones to facilitate curbside pickup at restaurants, and a small business relief package that included deferred business taxes and a $1 million stabilization fund.
Help is coming at the federal level. The $2 trillion COVID-19 relief legislation passed last week includes $349 billion in small business loans with money spent on rent, payroll and utilities becoming grants that don’t need to be paid back.
The map is helpful — we’ve added it to our CHS To Go listings page here.
But it echoes many existing media efforts and gives businesses yet another information source they need to keep apprised of any changes.
And changes are coming fast. Though Washington’s latest rounds of restrictions have included providers of food and drink as “essential businesses,” some are choosing to temporarily close to help do their part to encourage social distancing to slow the spread of COVID-19. Capitol Hill’s Optimism Brewing opted to shut down its beer takeout business and temporarily close last week so workers could do their part to help contain the virus.
Others are recognizing the takeout business rewards don’t outweigh the risks. The Seattle Met reports that local chains including Molly Moon’s, Evergreens, Frankie and Jo’s, and Marination are the first in a wave of businesses pulling back so their workers and customers stay home.
But many others are digging in and trying something new. Some aren’t on the city’s new map, yet, like Cook | Weaver on E Roy at Broadway. The “inauthentic Eurasian” joint in the Loveless Building has simplified, somewhat, with its to-go menu. At Cook | Weaver, that still means two different kinds of burgers — Kasu cauliflower and pork. Capitol Hill restaurants and bars are also stepping up with new liquor offerings now that the state has blessed the sale of sealed bottles. Cure, for example, is selling an Old Fashioned kit complete with a full bottle of bourbon. CHS has also seen margaritas and mimosas to go on the Hill. You won’t find those listings on the city’s map, yet, either.
Meanwhile, untold small businesses and independent service providers — food and drink establishments, yes, but also salons and stylists, specialty health providers, shops and boutiques, and more — will never reopen.
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