Brixton Business Improvement District (BID) has published proposals for a “new normal” which would see the town centre pedestrianised.
The not-for-profit group of local businessess behind the proposals, dubbed ‘Brixton Playground’, said if some streets were closed to traffic, restaurants, cafes, bars, and shops would be able to trade along the streets, while allowing for safe social distancing.
A spokesperson said: “Brixton Playground would see the pedestrianisation of Brixton Town Centre, including Atlantic Road, Coldharbour Lane, Beehive Place, Brixton Station Road, Pope’s Road and Ferndale Road.
“The Brixton business community believe this will allow for the safe reopening of the neighbourhood following the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The ‘Brixton Playground’ would create spaces to bring our multicultural community together, encourage dwell time, support family activities, providing a relaxing environment for people to dine, wander, socialise and enjoy our famous town centre.
“We want to bring these interactions onto our streets: playing, walking, cycling, reading, a liveable, inclusive and sustainable neighbourhood for all.”
Once the new Business and Planning Bill 2020 is passed, businesses will be able to apply for a ‘pavement licence’ until September 2021.
The BBID’s vision includes permanent pedestrianisation after a three-month trial, road closures in Atlantic Road, Coldharbour Lane, Beehive Place, Brixton Station Road, Pope’s Road and Ferndale Road, and daily trading in the streets permitted from 10am to 10pm.
Street cleaning and deliveries would be allowed between 6am to 9am.
The plans would allow businesses to install outdoor furniture outside, such as tables and chairs, and green features.
The Brixton BID board said the changes would “give us an opportunity to survive through these difficult times and keep our staff in employment and contributing to the local economy and for residents and visitors to enjoy Brixton”.
Lambeth Council has been contacted for comment for its view on the proposals.
Brixton BID represents over 500 small and large businesses.