Surrey Eases Red Tape, Expands Liquor Tasting Lounge Allowances for Breweries and Distilleries
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Surrey, BC – Surrey has made changes to address barriers that breweries and distilleries face when looking to establish in the city, including allowing liquor tasting lounges (a “lounge endorsement”) in highway commercial industrial and light industrial zones and increasing size allowances for such spaces.
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Surrey’s Economic Development Division hosted a roundtable with regional breweries to discuss the challenges they face when looking to establish or expand in Metro Vancouver. Some of the key challenges included light industrial zones not allowing for liquor tasting lounges, which required a rezoning to a comprehensive development zone, adding uncertainty, cost and time. The industry also voiced that restrictions on outdoor lounge areas (patios) were prohibitive, and that red tape slowed down the establishment process.
Working with the Planning & Development Department, the City has taken Zoning By-law amendments to address these challenges, including:
- Permitting breweries and distilleries to have a liquor tasting lounge in CHI, IB-3 and IL Zones;
- In the IB-3 and IL Zones, allowing for 40% of gross floor area of the business to be used as a liquor tasting lounge with allowances for retail sales (up to 150 metres/1,615 square feet) which is among the highest in Metro Vancouver;
- In the CHI Zone, there is no size restriction for the interior liquor tasting lounge or retail sales;
- Permitting outdoor patios in all three zones to a maximum of 80 square metres/861 square feet; and
- Reducing parking requirements
These changes mean Surrey has some of the most flexible allowances in Metro Vancouver for breweries and distilleries. The Zoning By-law amendments also mean that Surrey has opened-up more than 4,000 acres of land previously inaccessible to breweries for these types of businesses. Find out more here → .