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Mayor says monitoring of unauthorized cafes is underway in Tbilisi

By Tea Mariamidze
Friday, August 18
Tbilisi Mayor Davit Narmania says that City Hall has launched monitoring of unauthorized street cafes in the capital.

Narmania made the comment after the owners of 16 cafes on the recently-renovated Aghmashenebeli Avenue closed their cafes and bars this Monday in protest of the request of the Mayor’s Office to agree the design of street cafes with the Architecture Service of City Hall.

In case the cafe owners place tables and chairs in front of the bar without permission, they will be fined 10,000 GEL.

“Cafe-bars located on Aghmashenebeli Avenue will have the right to continue working when the lease will be paid and the visual side of the street cafes will be agreed with the Architectural Service,” the mayor stated.

Narmania noted that the restrictions refer not only to the cafes at Aghmashenebeli Avenue, but to the other cafe-bars in the city as well.

“In other parts of the city, cafe-bars are also being monitored. It is important that all of them obey the rules,” he said.

The owners of the cafes say that the decision of the City Hall is incomprehensible to them, as the guests of their open cafes are mostly foreign tourists. Also, they say that only 16 bars have been warned, and the rest of the bars continue to work with chairs and tables on the street.

The statement of the Mayor’s Office released this week reads that after the cafes undergo mandatory procedures for arranging open cafes in the relevant services of Tbilisi City Hall, they will be able to continue their activities according to the rules established by the law.

The monitoring of the cafe-bars will be introduced gradually in Tbilisi. The facilities which have unauthorized cafes arranged in the streets will receive warnings from City Hall and should dismantle the outdoors cafes until they obtain the relevant permit from the Mayor’s Office.