From Iceland — Most Merchants Pleased With Laugavegur Closing

Most Merchants Pleased With Laugavegur Closing

Published August 17, 2011

Shop owners on Laugavegur have apparently had a change of heart about the temporary closing of the street, telling RÚV that they are overall pleased with the experiment.
Laugavegur was closed to car traffic between Vatnstígur and Skólavörðustígur for the month of July. By all accounts, city residents themselves were very pleased with result. Foot traffic increased from about 9,000 per day to 14,000 per day.
Not everyone was initially happy with the idea, though. When the proposal was still being kicked around last spring, merchants on Laugavegur expressed worries that their business drop, despite the fact that the stretch of Laugavegur to be closed would only affect 17 parking spaces.
The merchants have apparently changed their tune, as a poll RÚV conducted among Laugavegur shop owners about the street closing showed that most of them felt it had positive effects on their businesses. The Association of Downtown Residents concurred with this feeling as well.
Currently, the city is only planning on closing Laugavegur again next summer, and then for just a month.

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