Shaftesbury sets out plans to temporarily pedestrianise Seven Dials

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Landlord Shaftesbury sets out plans to temporarily pedestrianise Seven Dials with Camden Council

Related tags Landlord London Camden council

Shaftesbury PLC has revealed plans to implement temporary timed road closures in London's Seven Dials from August 3.

The commercial landlord, which owns a 15.2-acre portfolio in London’s West End, says it has been working with Camden Council to develop the plans, which will form part of a programme of initiatives to support tenants and operators in the area. 

Shaftesbury will use a series of timed road closures to 'put pedestrians and cyclists first' during core daytime trading hours for F&B operators and retailers.

The timed closures will operate from 10am to 6pm, seven days a week, and will be controlled by a combination of droppable and/or plug-in barriers and the Seven Dials security team.

In addition to the road closures, Shaftesbury says it will be implementing a one-way system for pedestrians visiting Neal’s Yard and installing additional cycle parking throughout the estate.

It is also in discussion with Camden Council to allow F&B operators to utilise Seven Dials’ newly pedestrianised streets to provide additional external seating areas.

“The timed road closures in Seven Dials are a significant step in helping all our restaurants, bars, cafés and retailers rebuild as the lockdown eases and footfall begins to grow," says Charles Owen, portfolio executive at Shaftesbury.

"The combination of open-air streets and, in effect, wider footways, will make Seven Dials an even safer and more enjoyable experience for visitors and residents.

“We have worked closely with Camden Council to devise the plans, which received very strong support from members and officers.

"While the Camden community, its businesses and residents are facing challenges, working together like this will help ensure everyone thrives once again.”

As part of the initiative, Shaftesbury is working in collaboration with an artist to 'add vibrancy' to the traffic-free streets with a series of art works located throughout Seven Dials.

Shaftesbury says it is also providing additional internal and external space for Seven Dials’ tenants to utilise over the next few months.

“From the outset, Shaftesbury has understood the issues we face and shown welcome flexibility, integrity and creativity in ensuring we can re-open as easily as possible," says 26 Grains founder Alex Hely-Hutchinson, which is located within Neal's Yard. 

"A traffic-free Seven Dials will make the world of difference, providing all visitors with additional reassurance they can safely enjoy one of London’s best collections of independent brands, right in the heart of the West End.

“We also support Shaftesbury’s proposals to provide additional seating, and welcome their proactivity in doing all they can to help businesses.”

The plans are similar to those that have been implemented across the City of Westminster​, which have allowed hospitality businesses across the borough to create outdoor dining zones for the summer months.

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