Restaurant & Craft Beverage Site

Temporary Activity Permit (TAP) for Outdoor Seating


In an effort to support businesses in advance of the implementation of Virginia Governor Ralph Northam's Phase One, Prince William County is putting processes in place to help restaurants, dining, and craft beverage establishments through the Temporary Activity Permit (TAP) for Outdoor Seating.

Establishments with existing permitted outdoor seating areas do not need to apply for a TAP unless the business is planning to expand its footprint.

General Requirements

1. The outdoor seating must meet the requirements of the Governor’s Executive Order 61 and Executive Order 62 which include:

  • Occupancy may not exceed 50% of the lowest occupancy load on the certificate of occupancy, if applicable. 
  • No more than 10 patrons may be seated as a party.
  • Tables must be positioned six feet apart.

2. A Virginia Health Department (VDH) and Alcohol Beverage Control (AB) Authority Permit is required for the sale of alcohol.  For requirements please see Topic 16 ABC Response to Temporary Approval of Outside Dining Areas.

3. The outdoor seating area shall not be located in fire lanes.

4. If a tent is to be used please see the ​Temporary Tents – Submission and Inspection Guidelines.

Zoning Resources (LINK)

Outside Dining TAP Process FAQ'S (LINK)



Please reference the sample template here and online County Mapper sketch tool here

Draw the seating layout showing:

  • The dimension of seating area length and width;
  • Number of tables and chairs per table;
  • The spacing of tables, with a minimum of 6 feet between tables;
  • Any temporary barriers (orange mesh, rope, stanchions, jersey barrier, etc.) around seating;
  • Number of occupants, which must be 50% or less of code permitted occupancy;
  • Width of aisles and aisle accessways;
  • Aisle width minimum 48 inches for seating both sides, 36 inches for seating one side; and
  • Aisle accessway width minimum 12 inches between rows of tables and chairs.
  • Number of exits;
  • Occupant load less than 50 one exit required; and
  • Occupant load greater than 50 and less than 500 two exits required.
  • Exit width, with a minimum 3 feet; and
  • Distance to an exit.

Blue Box with text that reads Submit Application

Upon submission, please complete and attach all required documents including:
County Mapper Requirement, Requested Outdoor Site Plan, and Signed Application

For additional Prince William County Department of Development Services Resources, Click Here