Are "open container" laws the next big thing in booze policy?

Outside of New Orleans, there aren't too many places in the U.S. that you can casually stroll the sidewalk with a cocktail or beer in your hand. That may be changing, however, as Esther Fung reports for the Wall Street Journal:

"Property developers trying to create buzz for open-air shopping districts are lobbying regulators to relax rules to allow patrons to walk around streets and parks with alcoholic beverages.

As landlords hustle to get customers into their properties, they are looking to tap into demand for food-and-drink experiences. The hope: that lively atmospheres will encourage patrons to linger and shop.

Three years ago, Atlanta-based developer Vantage Realty Partners LLC proposed an open-container ordinance in Duluth, Ga., where it developed a retail and entertainment complex called Parsons Alley in a historic district downtown. The ordinance passed this year.

'Every restaurant and retailer loved it. It increases their sales. Their customers don’t have to stay confined in their premises and can walk to the town green or fountain with a drink,' said Chris Carter, co-founder of Vantage Realty..."

Read the whole thing here: