It’s outdoor cafe season in Downtown Indy

(Bluebeard pictured above)

Many residents look forward to this time of year.  A time when they can step outside for their meals to enjoy the fresh air, sights and sounds of the city. We have some great patios and sidewalk cafes in Downtown Indy and I’m looking forward to checking out some of the new ones this year.  Find a full list of restaurants with outdoor dining here.

Some of the city’s best businesses have great outdoor areas for guests. When vibrant activity spills out of shops and restaurants onto the sidewalks, it can really invigorate a neighborhood.  Here are some ideas for your business to enhance its public space and provide a warm welcome to guests this season.

Tips for your outdoor cafe:


Simple tables and chairs can be a welcome addition to your “order at the counter” or takeout business.

Patios are a wonderful place for people to meet up for a drink or appetizer after work to get their evening started. Mass Ave has many vibrant open spaces.


If you don’t already have an outdoor area for your business, consider adding one. Here’s a checklist to help you through the process.

How to file for a sidewalk cafe license:


Enjoy tons of outdoor dining options on the Downtown Canal Walk (Historical Society’s Stardust Terrace Cafe pictured below)


Downtown Indy is passionate about creating comfortable, enjoyable and aesthetically pleasing public spaces. Creating the perfect space requires many different elements. Great lighting, music, shade, fresh flowers and art can make all the difference in the world.  I hope this helps you enliven your outdoor area and brings new customers your way!

Download the printable Outdoor Cafe Guidelines (PDF)

For more information about opening an outdoor cafe in Downtown Indy contact:
Department of Code Enforcement
(317) 327-5245