A local business offering tours of Calgary breweries on multi-passenger bikes will now be allowed to serve beer as customers pedal between destinations.Pedal Pub Calgary, which launched in April, announced Wednesday that alcohol can now be consumed on its fleet of 15-passenger bikes. The change follows months of discussions with provincial and city officials in an effort to have liquor policies amended, owner and co-founder David Skabar said.“We worked with the Province of Alberta for the last eight months and the City of Calgary for the last eight months, to really be in lockstep with them to say, ‘look, the policy is outdated,’ ” Skabar said. “If you look through the AGLC (Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis) handbook, you’re not going to find a policy for a pedal pub . . . so we worked with them to create the appropriate policies.”
Pedal Pub owner David Skabar talks about having the first fully licensed Pedal Pub bike in Canada, before the first ride through Inglewood on Wednesday June 26, 2019. Gavin Young/Postmedia
AGLC said it has approved liquor service and consumption under a Class B public conveyance licence for companies that operate “large-format” bicycles. Other examples of Class B public conveyance licences include facilities such as commercial aircraft, limousines and water excursion craft.“AGLC recently received applications from two companies (one in Calgary and the other in Edmonton) requesting licences to serve liquor on their city touring bikes,” the agency said in a prepared statement.“The companies met the requirements for a licence with some conditions. The additional conditions are focused on supporting a safer experience for patrons, other road users and the operators that earn a living through the business.”Some of those conditions include having a minimum of two staff members present at all times during operation of the party bike. Operators must also meet all municipal conditions and requirements. Minors are not allowed on the group bike when liquor service is provided and all liquor service must be provided by the licensee.The move follows other recent changes to Alberta liquor policies. Last month, the province said rules have been changed to allow event organizers the flexibility to serve drinks where they see fit on festival grounds.Meanwhile, the City of Calgary announced earlier this week that it is postponing a pilot project to allow liquor consumption at select public parks until at least next year. The city said the delay was to ensure it had enough time to address concerns about a potential increase in disorderly behaviour.