Council approves closure of streets to boost the economy
Council approves closure of streets to boost the economy

Manchester Council has approved several plans received from businesses across the city to close streets and allow them to be used to boost the economy as part of the Manchester post COVID-19 economic recovery. This follows guidance from the national government enabling restaurants, cafes and bars to reopen safely with social distancing rules. Applications for businesses to apply to do the same or similar can be found below.

The Council has agreed to close streets across the Northern Quarter and city centre to help businesses reopen safely. Local businesses, who’ve been working collaboratively with their neighbours, have drawn up and submitted plans for them to utilise public space. Streets such as Edge Street, Houldsworth Street, Dorsey Street are being earmarked for closures, alongside streets in the Gay Village. This is in addition to the existing closures already outlined in Stevenson Square, Dale Street and Deansgate, and Thomas Street which was fast-tracked earlier in the year. Those who have submitted designs informally to the Council will still need to submit a formal application so it’s recorded and collated properly. The application process is short and applications can be completed relatively quickly. The Council will be covering the fee for the road closure and the tables and chairs temporary license in order to encourage businesses to open safely and help our local recovery.

The Council are wanting these applications to be reviewed in a timely manner to ensure businesses can reopen again safely whilst helping the economic recovery in Manchester. If you are a business wanting to make use of road or other space outside your property, you can look at the application form here but the Council are stressing the need to work collaboratively with neighbours to ensure space is used fairly. 

The Council have stipulated that they expect businesses to be good neighbours, which has inspired the ‘Good Neighbour Policy’ which will be included in the approvals. As a local Labour team, we expect our streets to be respected by businesses and for businesses to be considerate to the thousands of people who live and work in the area. 

Cllr Jon-Connor Lyons, who has worked to see this come forward, has said “Ensuring the Northern Quarter and the city centre is accessible for all will be a priority. I’m encouraging, where appropriate, businesses to utilise street space so they can reopen safely. They must clean up their areas and be good neighbours to residents and other businesses. Licensing and Out of Hour officers will be proactively working with businesses to ensure compliance with the rules. I’m currently speaking to businesses who have yet to put in applications, encouraging them to work collaboratively and enable safe, managed street closures. I’m currently lobbying to see Tib Street, from Foundary Lane to Thomas Street, closed to traffic and a space for businesses to use.”

He issued the need for  businesses and their customers to be responsible, saying “Reopening businesses safely is a priority and it is important for everyone to remember we are still in a health crisis.  We are asking businesses and their customers to be responsible. We all know that if we do not see the hospitality sector reopen, we could see severe economic damage.”

Businesses will be expected to help close the streets in their area working in partnership with other businesses and the Council.

If you’d like to ask any questions about this and your a local resident or business in Piccadilly Ward, please contact Cllr Jon-Connor Lyons by emailing him at [email protected] 

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