CLEVELAND (WJW) – Known for fun and food on the riverfront the Flats East Bank is exploring adding one more attraction for visitors as leadership eyes a plan to become a Designated Outdoor Refreshment Area or DORA.

“It’s a huge draw, most people are used to getting a drink sitting inside at a bar and in order to go outside having to leave that drink behind,” said Lauren Wheatley, Director of Marketing for the Flats East Bank.

Patrons within a DORA can buy alcohol and leave the business of purchase with an opened alcoholic beverage and continue drinking outside within the limits of the designated DORA.

In April, the East 4th Street area received approval to become the city’s first DORA, set to begin next spring. A proposal for the Flats East Bank has yet to be presented to Cleveland officials Wheatley said. 

“All of our tenants have their liquor licenses and so what it really allows for is people to walk outside and enjoy the property as a whole,” said Wheatley.

Margaritaville survived the pandemic slump in sales, and management believes allowing outdoor drinking will give the area an opportunity for additional economic growth.

“I think it’s going to be great for people to walk around and have a good time, a great atmosphere, you can go to multiple restaurants, multiple bars and really enjoy the whole community,” said Michael Grasso, General Manager of Margaritaville.

Mixing alcohol and a possible increase in the number of visitors to the Flats East Bank may call for added security measures. Options for extra safety precautions are also being evaluated. 

“We want to make sure that when this is ready to go that everyone is safe and that it’s a good environment for people that come here and for our businesses,” said Wheatley.