Birmingham news More car parking spaces disappear for another parklet as Opus restaurant closes PremierLeague-News.Com
PremierLeague-News.Com - As the Clean Air Zone approaches and more Birmingham city centre car parking spaces disappear just yards from Opus restaurant which has closed after 16 years, complete our 'Yes' or 'No' Parklet Poll
PremierLeague-News.Com - Breaking Sport Transfer News ! Another new parklet has been installed in Birmingham city centre - showing how the city is moving towards becoming a 'Clean Air Zone' in more ways than one. The hospitality hideaways cum open-air office meeting spaces are being introduced in a bid to enable social distancing and to help venues to recover. The latest parklet has been installed outside the 1901 Old Royal pub on Church Street, one of the city centre's most beautiful Grade II buildings. Since the first roofless parklet was introduced in Waterloo Street last August, others have been installed including one on Colmore Row, Barwick Street and higher up on Church Street next to the Hotel Du Vin. A new parklet has arrived on Church Street outside of the Old Royal pub in the heart of Birmingham city centre's Colmore Business Improvement District (Image: Graham Young / BirminghamLive) With less than three weeks to go before the Clean Air Zone goes live on June 1, the latest installation has again been stocked with flowers and shrubs by Cofton Nurseries. The new location is little more than 100 yards from Opus Restaurant, which announced this week it was set to close permanently after 16 years, prompting comments that it was " a great loss for Birmingham." Since each parklet typically takes up the equivalent of two or three on-street car parking spaces, more than a dozen spaces have now been lost. What they said When the Waterloo Street parklet was opened, Colmore BID said: "It has capacity for around 20 people within four defined areas; seating with a low table for coffee and drinks, an area for dining with a high table, standing room only and an area that has been specifically designed to be accessible for wheelchair users. "Located across two parking bays outside of Purecraft Bar and Kitchen, the area features raised seating amongst timber walls, providing additional protection from highway traffic. "(They will) provide nearby hospitality venues with more facilities to serve customers. Opus, Cornwall Street on May 13 - the day after the restaurant revealed it would not be reopening once life tries to return to normal after the Covid-19 pandemic (Image: Graham Young / BirminghamLive) "The new community space, which is located on Waterloo Street outside Purecraft Bar and Kitchen, is part of a larger scheme to support the District’s leisure and hospitality industry that has suffered tremendously during lockdown." Michele Wilby, CEO of Colmore BID, said: "“The spaces aren’t just for use by people visiting nearby venues though. You can have meetings with colleagues, catch up with friends or even take your own packed lunch out there. poll loading Will introducing parklets and reducing car parking spaces in a Clean Air Zone help to save pubs and restaurants in Birmingham city centre? 0+ VOTES SO FAR Yes No "We want these spaces to become a permanent feature within the city and have plans for many many more.” Following the introduction of four more in September, Michele added: “We’ve had some truly fantastic feedback both from businesses and people making use of the scheme and it’s great to see them being used not only for a drink and a bite to eat, but also people hosting outdoor meetings and just generally taking time for themselves." In January this year following the introduction of lockdown, Colmore BID said it was having to close them temporarily. Opus, Cornwall Street on May 13 - the day after the restaurant revealed it would not be reopening once life tries to return to normal after the Covid-19 pandemic (Image: Graham Young / BirminghamLive) It said: "While we are saddened that we have had to take this action, it is in the best interest of those living, working and visiting the District, in order to keep them safe. "These measures will be reviewed in line with Government guidance and we hope we can welcome back patrons soon." They have now been reopened and more are being 'planted' on the city's streets.
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. Even more spaces have been lost to sections of widened pavements, including Church Street opposite the Hotel Du Vin, Temple Street West and Temple Row. Some might argue those spaces could have been used by city visitors to visit indoor hospitality venues such as Purnell's Michelin-starred restaurant on the Cornwall Street corner of New Market Street.
When the Clean Air Zone charge comes into effect from June 1, drivers of non-compliant cars will face an £8 a day charge to drive into the city Meanwhile, further measures have been taken recently to limit vehicular access to the city centre including junction closures and ' bus gates' which have been introduced in St Chad's Queensway and Colmore Circus as well as in Moor Street Queensway. Other areas of the city are undergoing major roadworks, including Cornwall Street, Broad Street and Colmore Row outside Snow Hill Railway Station.
One of several new 'parklets' in Birmingham city centre, this one outside 200 Degrees Coffee on Colmore Row has been decorated with birds beneath the foliage which shields those using the tables and benches inside from traffic fumes
(Image: Graham Young / BirminghamLive)
The stretch of Cornwall Street between Opus and Newhall Street is being turned into an area for hospitality businesses to serve customers outside. But that work will take until September to complete. A narrow lane has been maintained to enable drivers to head one way uphill between Church Street and Newhall Street. This week, Birmingham City Council announced that Paradise Circus Queensway - renamed Lyon Queensway in December 2018 but not yet implemented because of the roadworks - would never reopen to through traffic, and would instead be the preserve of trams, buses, taxis and bicycles.
Cornwall Street will be unrecognisable when city centre workers return
Wider pavements replace disappearing car park spaces in greener city centre
And finally... just when you thought it was safe to go out to sit in a parklet, the city has been experiencing the coldest spring for decades with rain in May further hitting attempts for hospitality to recover after some lockdown restrictions were lifted on April 12. The weather in April and May last year was remarkably dry and sunny, just when people were told to stay indoors for lockdown, but the recent and prolonged cold spell has been a reminder it doesn't always do what you want it to do. According to the website climatedate.eu, the average precipitation in Birmingham per month is from 46mm in July to 66mm in August and December. The average number of days when it rains or snows varies between 13 days in March, April and June to at least 17 days in January and December. That means, on average, it rains on more than 48 per cent of days in the year - with or without a roofless parklet to sit out in.
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