Canton City Council considers open container area downtown

Canton City Council considers open container area downtown

CANTON, OH (WOIO) - Businesses on Cleveland and Market avenues in Canton support an open container ordinance. It would be the center of 69 acres and it would include 30

Attorney Edmond Mack put together the proposal.

"In specific areas of the city, you would have the opportunity to have an open container and it would have to be in a designated cup you can can walk outside and enjoy your beverage," Mack said.

And this is not new to a visitor from Pennsylvania.

"There is simply no law against having an open container of alcohol. You can walk on the street with a beer. I've had a beer or two on the street I think I like that," he said.

Canton City Council is putting the final touches on a legislation.

"We are for it, but we just want a better understanding how it's going to be operated," said Councilwoman Chris Smith.

The open container ordinance does come with controversy.

Chris Cugina with the Stark County anti-drug coalition opposes it.

"Downtown is supposed to be a fun place to come especially on our First Friday events. Those are supposed to be for families. Do we really want people walking around drunk at all of our events," Cugina said.

Amanda Coen, a bartender, is excited about the possibilities. "I think we need to be responsible with it but it will really bring some business give people free range and explore more stuff ."

Canton City Council is expected to vote next week.

Last April, Ohio legislators passed a law allowing cities, with more than 35,000 people, to allow an open container policy. People would have to buy drinks from bars or restaurants in the designated area, and not bring their own alcohol in.

Cities with at least 50,000 people would be able to have two areas.

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