SAN FRANCISCO—On Tuesday, May 26, the city of San Francisco announced the launch of a new program called Shared Spaces. The program will allow local businesses to utilize public spaces such as sidewalks, full or partial streets, plazas, and parks for restaurant or retail pick-up and other related activities. While restaurant dine-in is currently not allowed by San Francisco’s COVID-19 Public Health order, once it is permitted, the Shared Spaces program will apply to dine-in as well.

The Shared Spaces program was developed by San Francisco’s COVID-19 Economic Recovery Team, a municipal agency responsible for assisting the city with sustaining local businesses and mitigating the economic situation during this pandemic. Under the Shared Spaces program, businesses and merchant associations will be able to apply for free, expedited permits that will allow them to share these spaces with the public. These spaces can be used for activities permitted under San Francisco’s Public Health order, including restaurant pick-up services, beverage sales, and retail.

Business owners who are interested in applying will be asked to ensure a safe path of travel for customers and comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, which requires businesses to make entrances accessible for the disabled.

Final details regarding the program and how to apply are expected to be released in June. For more information and details related to the Shared Spaces program, visit