BY FANNI FRANKL
Chelsea Market recently announced the start of their block-long outdoor seating and dining program on Manhattan’s West Side on Monday.
The block will feature more than 115 socially distanced tables lining 1,000-plus linear feet on 15th and 16th Streets (between 9th and 10th Avenues) so more than 200 guests will be able to enjoy full table service, self-service, take-out, and delivery from restaurants in the area. This initiative was part of the Meatpacking Business Improvement District’s plan to keep Chelsea Market tenants operating during the pandemic.
Five restaurants including Ayada, Buddakan, Dickson’s Farmstand Meats, Lobster Place and Miznon will be available for outdoor dining with table service. 11 restaurants will be open with communal seating while L’Arte del Gelato outdoor cart will be available for service as well.
“Having a safe outdoor space to relax and eat is such an important amenity for the Meatpacking District community,” said Executive Director of the Meatpacking Business Improvement District, Jeffrey LeFrancois. “Chelsea Market helps make our neighborhood one of the most enjoyable and unique in the city and being able to once again experience the wonders of the market will go a long way in making everyone feel more at home.”
Part of the project included lush landscaping along the sidewalks of the district market to create enclosure. Six-foot circles were placed on the street and sidewalk to help guests remain socially distant, and health ambassadors are on-site with complimentary masks to ensure proper safety protocols and procedures are being followed.
To help guests navigate their dining options, Chelsea Market has launched a Mobile Directory, scannable onsite, that lists all available menu and for-sale items for each retailer and restaurant. QR codes can be used at each table to direct customers to an exact location to pick up their meals or merchandise.
Many business owners were excited about the prospect of the vibrancy of Chelsea Market returning.
“I was delighted to hear about the expansion of outdoor seating on 15th Street. As a resident of Chelsea and business owner in Chelsea Market, it really allows our community the extra space to enjoy the entire neighborhood,” said Rachel Simons, Co-Founder of Seed + Mill. “Chelsea Market and the Meatpacking BID have done much more than just create extended seating – they’ve given the neighborhood something to be excited about.”
“I’ve missed seeing this neighborhood alive,” said Esther Choi, Owner of Mŏkbar. “Bringing so many restaurants outdoors at once is safely bringing our neighborhood back together and giving us all something to be grateful for after a long few months.”