Core restaurant anger calmed as city sets up pickup and delivery spots

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A year after the pandemic began, London City Hall is setting up new quick stop zones in the city center for drivers and customers who deliver groceries.

Author of the article:

Norman De Bono, Jonathan Juha

Release date:

March 17, 2021 • • 43 minutes ago • • Read for 2 minutes • • Join the conversation Izaac Whitehead, manager of Soul Kitchen on Dundas Street in central London, said a police officer was handing out tickets to delivery drivers who stopped for the restaurant for pickup on a busy evening.  (Derek Ruttan / The London Free Press) Izaac Whitehead, manager of Soul Kitchen on Dundas Street in central London, said a police officer was handing out tickets to delivery drivers who had stopped to pick up for the restaurant on a busy evening. (Derek Ruttan / The London Free Press)

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A year after the pandemic began, London City Hall is setting up new quick stop zones in the city center for drivers and customers who deliver groceries.

More than a dozen spaces are being made available throughout the core to help people understand which rooms can be used for short stops to pick up orders through apps like Uber Eats and Skip The Dishes.

This is just a start, however, as more rooms are added, particularly to Dundas Place, where companies have complained of excessive ticketing across the city.

“This is only the first batch. More to come, ”said Jim Yanchula, urban regeneration manager for the city.

Adding seats to Dundas Place will take more time as the city needs to ensure accessibility, emergency access and ensure that utility access is not covered by a parked car, he said.

“We have to do it right and we need a lot of people around the table. It will take a while, ”said Yanchula. “Dundas Place is coming. It’s in the funnel. “

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At Jill’s table on King Street, the grocery and kitchen supply needs pickup and delivery, and stops nearby will help, said owner Jill Wilcox.

“This is great. We have relied on pickup and delivery for a while, so this is helpful,” she said.

Downtown London, the dealer group, also welcomed the news, saying it had heard from companies that short-term parking was required.

“We contacted members to identify short-term parking spaces. We are very happy that the city worked with us, ”said director Barbara Maly.

The move came after downtown restaurant owners recently complained about “aggressive ticketing” by park officials.

They said the high number of tickets issued against delivery drivers prevented them from picking up orders in the city center. This threatened business livelihoods at a time when take-out and delivery orders have become critical to restaurant operations due to restrictions to slow the spread of COVID-19, companies argued.

Izaac Whitehead, who runs the Soul Kitchen restaurant on Dundas Place, was one of the speakers. “If the drivers stop coming (for fear of getting a ticket) we would close,” he said earlier this month.

“We have heard from companies that they need clear and comfortable areas for their customers and delivery services,” said Orest Katolyk, chief of the city hall’s law enforcement agency, in a statement.

“We have done our best to meet these requirements and also to balance the need for security. In identifying these locations, we considered pedestrian safety, transit, emergency services, traffic flow and accessibility. “

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In two of the delivery and pick-up zones on Richmond Street near Angel Street and Central Avenue in Victoria Park, London, drivers can park for 10 minutes free of charge to collect their orders.

Four zones have also been created on Talbot Street near Covent Garden Market. This allows users to park for a maximum of 20 minutes.

City hall said tickets will continue to be issued to cars parked in a way that obstructs traffic or poses a security risk.

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