Footpath trading and outdoor dining permits

Paying at a mobile food truck

You will need a permit if you want to display goods or trade on the footpaths in Darebin, we've got everything you need to know about mobile trading.

To place items outside your shop or business, you need to apply for a footpath trading permit. This is to make sure footpaths are kept clear for pedestrians and don't obstruct traffic or access to properties.

Do I need a footpath trading permit?

You will need a permit if you want to display goods or trade on the footpaths in Darebin.

If you answer yes to the following question, it is likely that you will need to apply for a Footpath trading permit:

  • Are you planning on placing chairs and tables, an A-frame sign or display of goods (e.g. fruit stand) on the footpath?

To make the application process is as simple as possible, please ensure you have:

  • An overhead site plan of the footpath with measurements of the footpath including the kerbside zone, trading zone and pedestrian zone
  • Colour photographs and detailed design drawings with measurements of all items being placed on the footpath.
  • A copy of your current public liability insurance with a minimum of $10 million dollars including the City of Darebin as an interested party.
  • Read the Footpath activities policy(PDF, 381KB) and Footpath trading booklet(PDF, 2MB) for further details.

Outdoor Dining and Trading Policy update

The new Outdoor Dining and Trading Policy and Outdoor Dining and Trading Design Guidelines have been finalised. The amended fees and charges for outdoor dining will come into effect from 1 July. To view the new policy and find out more, visit Your Say Darebin.

Frequently Asked Questions

In March 2024, Council adopted the new Outdoor Trading and Dining Policy which includes a new way of charging fees.

At a special Council meeting on the 17 June 2024, Council considered a report deferring implementing the new fee structure until financial year 2025-26.

This provides opportunity for Council to communicate with businesses to help understand the change, and to prepare for the new way we will charge fees for outdoor trading and dining from 1 July 2025.

What is changing for 2024/25?

The fee structure and fee values for items placed on footpaths such as A-board, bench, table, planter box, etc.  will remain the same as the 2023/2024 fee structure. Existing permit holders will receive their renewal notices in July 2024 once Council adopts the draft budget for 2024-25. An interim fee structure for parklets has been introduced as defined within the policy, with parklets being charged at a rate of $2.50/day/bay, calculated from the permit invoice issue date until June 30, 2025.

For new applications - visit our Business Permits page to apply for a new Footpath Trading Permit.


How do I apply for a Parklet permit for 2024/25?

You can apply for a parklet permit by completing the online application form

How do I apply for a New Footpath Trading permit for 2024/25?

You can apply for a footpath trading permit by completing the online application form

How do I renew my Footpath trading permit for 2024/25?

Council will send a renewal notice to existing businesses with footpath trading permits once the draft budget for 2024-25 is adopted.

Please complete this application form and return it to Council for processing via email at, by post to PO Box 91, Preston, VIC 3072, or in person at 274 Gower Street, Preston.


Why do we need a permit?

Under Darebin City Council’s General Local Law Number 1 20215, a permit is required to display goods or trade on footpaths in Darebin.

What is changing in 2025/26?

This is when the new method for calculating outdoor dining permits will be implemented. The new fee structure is based on calculating a square metre rate at specified percentages for different business precincts. See the Outdoor Dining and Trading Draft Policy for more information.

Business with existing permits will be provided with information on this when permits are due for renewal Councils website will be updated to include relevant information to assist business with this transition.

Existing and new applicants will be able to apply for a permit under the new fee structure online.

Why did you update the Outdoor Dining and Trading Policy and Outdoor Dining and Trading Design Guidelines?

The policy was updated to ensure we have the best approach to managing outdoor dining so it is equitable and accessible for everyone.

The updated policy and guidelines provide clear and simple guidance to businesses that consider establishing new or extend existing outdoor dining and trading areas, including parklets.

What changes are coming in July 2025?

From 1st July 2025, we are introducing a new method for calculating outdoor dining permit costs as well as associated footpath trading items and these changes will be adopted across all permits in each of the activity centres across Darebin.

What will be the new method for calculating outdoor dining permit costs and associated footpath trading items starting in July 2025?

Fees and Charges will be determined by Council at the start of each financial year in accordance with the published Fees and Charges schedule.

Fees will be calculated as follows:

Outdoor dining on footpaths will be calculated on a square metre rate at the following percentages for different business precincts:

- a rate of 30 % of the annual average retail rents for the centre.

Outdoor dining on nature strips and in road spaces (Parklets) will be calculated on a square metre rate at the following percentages for different business precincts:

- a rate of 50% of the annual average retail rents in Primary areas.

- a rate of 40% of the annual average retail rents in Secondary area.

- a rate of 20% of the annual average retail rents in Revitalisation areas (or a standard applicable rate as calculated by Council).


As an existing footpath trading permit holder, will these changes affect me?

Yes, this policy change will affect all current footpath trading permit holders, commencing in 2025/26. Your renewal notice will provide you with more information about this calculation for your business.

What is the revised process for neighbouring consent?

Applications can be made to occupy unused footpath space and/or car spaces in front of immediately neighbouring properties. For these applications:

Council will give written notice to the owners and occupiers of the adjoining property of the proposed application. This applies to neighbouring premises on street level only, not residents or businesses located directly or indirectly above the business in question.

Notified parties will have a minimum two (2) week period to make a submission before a Council decision is made. Council will consider any submissions/concerns received as part of its assessment of the application for a permit.

How are you making outdoor dining equitable and accessible for all?

Applications must meet the access needs of all public space users and modes of transport to ensure their passage is convenient, safe, equitable and efficient. All proposals can be accessed, used, and enjoyed by people of all ages and abilities. They also prioritise access for active modes of transport like walking and cycling over motor vehicles.

Who will navigate the consultation process with Yarra Trams and Vic Roads, will there be fees involved?

Council will liaise directly with government bodies to provide appropriate levels of feedback and assessment.

Estimated time frame to be expected?

Council will give an indication to when that will be available.

Will Council help fund parklets, drawings and construction?

No they will not, this will be the reasonability of the business owner.

Should a business continue with drawings for the application?

Currently all applications are on hold till further notice.


Are parklets Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) compliant?

Yes, our design guidelines have been developed to ensure parklets must be constructed to ensure accessibility for all our community members with DDA compliance requirements to be met in the design and construction of a parklet.

How will this policy change impact parking capacity?

If a business is applying for a parklet, it does indicate that parking spaces in the immediate area may reduce to accommodate the parklet.

How will this policy change general accessibility locally?

The decision-making guidelines will ensure that road safety for pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles is of the highest consideration and that the proposed parklet provides other benefits such as increased safety on our streets and improved greening and design outcomes for local businesses.

Are parklets permanent?

No, parklets are not permanent and can be removed should a business decide they no longer want or need the parklet, however any removal costs will be the business owner’s responsibility. It is the responsibility of parklet owners to always maintain structures to an acceptable compliant level.

Can I apply for a new parklet permit?

Yes, visit our permits webpage for more information.


How we assess your application

We will assess your application to make sure there are no impacts on:

  • vehicle and pedestrian traffic flow and safety
  • streetscape, appearance and urban design of the area
  • public health and safety
  • any proposed traffic improvements

We will also check that it adheres to the current building and planning schemes.

Rules for using the footpath

Our guidelines document provides more information about footpath trading rules and restrictions. These include:

  • minimum kerb clearances
  • correct ways to arrange and display your items
  • standards for portable and real estate signs
  • rules for temporary outdoor dinning

When you are granted a permit, you must make sure to follow the permit conditions.

How to apply

Contact our Business Concierge to apply for all your business permits.

More information

Phone: 03 8470 8888