Can superblocks improve life in cities?

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Can superblocks improve life in cities?

07/06/2017
Barcelona
JLL

How to solve traffic, noise and pollution problems in big cities? For Barcelona, the answer could be in superblocks.

The Catalan capital has put in place a plan to restrict vehicular traffic on some streets, creating small pedestrian communities within the grid system of the city. "The objective is to improve the quality of life of people in the neighborhoods of the city," says Luis Guardia Torres, general director of JLL in Barcelona. "Superblocks must generate a more sustainable and greener environment with greater productivity within these areas."

 

Impact on trade and income
In addition to pedestrians and cyclists, superblocks should be good news for area businesses, which have been particularly hit in recent times by increased e-commerce. Unlike the central area and the great avenues of Barcelona, neighborhoods like the Eixample or Poblenou, have never been able to attract the consumers nor to generate experience of purchase.

 

Guardia is hopeful: "Experience tells us that pedestrian streets are much more attractive for leasing commercial premises," he says. "If we detect an increase in demand, with a strong competition for this type of commercial space, rents can increase and attract investors." In addition, these types of routes also have their impact on the last mile of logistics.

 

Full article (Spanish)