A planned outdoor dining space abutting the Belmont Brewing Company that would have added about 35 more seats outside the popular brewery and restaurant is no longer being pursued by the business, according to co-owner David Lott.

Last month, the California Coastal Commission heard an appeal of Belmont Brewing’s application after some commissioners voiced concerns about public land being given to a private business and scheduled a new hearing for its next meeting to decide whether to allow the dining parklet to move forward or side with residents who oppose it.

However, on Friday, Lott said Belmont Brewing has decided to abandon the application for now, but he didn’t rule out revisiting their parklet request in the future. The added space would have allowed people with pets to sit outside the restaurant, but Lott said the appeals process had become exhausting.

“Long Beach is five miles of beach and we’re one of the few places where you can sit on the beach,” Lott said. “We thought it was a worthwhile project, but a lot of residents didn’t agree with us.”

A resident group named “Parking not Parklets” has petitioned the city to preserve parking spots instead of allowing them to be converted into restaurant dining areas, calling parklets a gift of public land to private entities that would exacerbate parking shortages in Belmont Shore.

Belmont Brewing’s proposed parklet location is not on a typical public street. It’s not open to regular vehicle traffic, but it is considered a public right-of-way where city vehicles can access the beach and delivery trucks can drop off goods.

The proposed parklet outside of Belmont Brewing Company. Photo courtesy city of Long Beach.

Pictures presented at the Coastal Commission’s October hearing showing large trucks blocking much of the walkway appeared to help shift some commissioners’ opinions.

Julie Dean, a co-founder of the pro-parking group, said she was excited to hear that the project is no longer moving forward and that the group would continue to oppose parklets in the area.

“I was happy to hear the Coastal Commissioners, many of them, having an issue with the fact that free land was being given to a private business,” Dean said. “It would be great if the city could reconsider that, especially within Second Street where the businesses were already given free land with a good portion of the sidewalk, and now they’re asking for more.”

Approved parklets are considered public spaces, according to the city, and a condition of approval for all outdoor dining parklets is that the businesses post signs noting that anyone can sit there, even if they’re not patronizing nearby shops.

Unlike parklets being pursued by other businesses in the city, including several on Second Street, Belmont Brewing is in an area of the coastal zone where the city doesn’t have the final say on approving or denying projects.

That means other restaurants just a few blocks from Belmont Brewing only have to go through a city process to get their parklets approved. Legends Restaurant and Sports Bar and Open Sesame have already won preliminary approvals from city commissions.

Some other businesses awaiting hearing dates on parklet requests are George’s Greek Cafe, Panama Joe’s and Aroma di Roma.

Jason Ruiz covers City Hall and politics for the Long Beach Post. Reach him at [email protected] or @JasonRuiz_LB on Twitter.