Belfast Chamber has called for ‘hospitality zones’ in a ‘Building Belfast Back Better’ document it published yesterday.
“Businesses that were trading well have suddenly had to cease and seen their income disappear almost overnight. Virtually no aspect of our society has gone untouched with our economy especially impacted,” the report notes.
“Surveys conducted by Belfast Chamber showed that, at the height of the pandemic, only 6 per cent of businesses in Belfast were physically open and trading with 80 per cent of firms furloughing staff.”
The 15-point document includes seven short-term steps and eight longer term goals for improving the city after the pandemic.
The group have called for longer trading hours on Sundays, as well as designating open and public spaces as covered ‘hospitality zones’ with seating.
They called for cafes, bars and restaurants to be temporarily allowed to use parking bays in front their establishments as seating and dining areas as is happening in cities like Vancouver, Tel Aviv and Rotterdam.
You can read the full report here.