Barcelona protects the pacified streets of the Eixample from new bars
The City Council wants to prevent streets like Consell de Cent from applying the same leisure monoculture model as Enric Granados
BarcelonaMay the announcement of urban improvements not translate into the expulsion of neighbours and lifelong commerce, as has already happened in so many places in Barcelona, from the Born to Gràcia. With this premise in mind, the City Council has approved a suspension of new business licenses in the streets where the pacification of the Eixample will begin to unfold, in the surroundings of the future green axis of Consell de Cent. The aim of the measure is to avoid that, once the streets are places with less space for cars -they will not have asphalt and the speed will be limited to 10 km/h-, they are filled with new bars and establishments of the same style. In short, what happened in Enric Granados street, now converted into a hub of leisure and food, or in Blai street, in Poble-sec, which is full of tapas bars.
The government commission has approved a one-year suspension of licences and building permits for all projects linked to musical entertainment, restaurants, and the food trade. And, as it did in the Sant Antoni neighbourhood when the superilla (superblock) was deployed, the municipal government is committed to approving a plan of uses that establishes the criteria for where and how many establishments of this type will be able to open. "We do not want a monoculture city, we want to avoid gentrification", says the deputy mayor of Urbanism, Janet Sanz, who, in fact, already left the door open to a regulation of this sort last week when they announced the teams of architects who will be responsible for drawing the pacification.
The suspension affects the first sections to be worked on: Carrer de Consell de Cent between Vilamarí and Roger de Llúria, Carrer de Rocafort and Carrer de Borrell between Avinguda de Roma and Gran Via, and the section of Carrer d'Enric Granados between Plaça del Doctor Letamendi and Consell de Cent. In the area around Carrer de Girona, a specific use plan is already in place to regulate public activities, which was deployed when the pacification of this street began.
According to the City Council, the measure is focused on protecting local commerce and replicating, also in this aspect, the model of Sant Antoni, which is the model that wants to be urbanistically extended. The deputy mayor of Urbanism ensures that the plan of uses that was applied in the streets around the market of Sant Antoni, when it was reformed and it triggered the alarms of gentrification, has served to preserve the existing trade and also to facilitate the arrival of a varied type of businesses.
The forecast is to have the projects for the first four green axes and the first four squares at the intersections ready to start working on them in the summer of 2022. With the horizon of 2030, the idea is to apply the same drawing in 21 axes and 21 squares. The first step is now to unify the drawing that will be applied in all the streets, and what is already known is that the person in charge of leading the process will be B67 Palomeras Architects and Cierto Estudio, the team that won the public competition.