Shoppers Experience Boston's Newbury Street Traffic Free | NECN
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Shoppers Experience Boston's Newbury Street Traffic Free

Back Bay street was closed to traffic for one day as an experiment

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    NEWSLETTERS

    For one day only, Boston's Newbury Street was closed so that shoppers could stroll it traffic free. (Published Sunday, Aug. 7, 2016)

    Shoppers on Boston’s Newbury Street were treated to a unique experience on Sunday when they were allowed to walk the roadway without any traffic.

    “I've always dreamed of this, I think this is great,” said one shopper.

    For one day only, the street in Boston’s Back Bay was closed to drivers from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

    “It gets people out and walking and socializing,” said Wendy Fuller, who was visiting from Washington, D.C.

    From worldwide fashion icons, to small, local business — retailers had the chance to get up close and personal with potential customers.

    “We are hoping to have people who have never found us before,” said Patrick Vardaro, of Boston Olive Oil Company.

    Shoppers said the street had a different vibe, which is a destination for tourists.

    “The sidewalks are always crowded in the summer time so they will be able to spread out more,” said Annette Give, Owner of Charles Realty.

    With no beeping horns or flashing hazard lights on the normally busy street, the only hustle and bustle was shoppers.

    “No double parked cars, it's great,” said Kevin Donahue, Boston Transportation Department’s Assistant Director of Parking Management.

    Anan Indaram was visiting his daughter and apparently didn't get the memo that the street would be closed.

    Instead of shopping on Newbury Street, Indaram had to spend $110 retrieving his car from a tow lot.

    The transportation department said they did make efforts to make the public aware.

    “We posted on Friday, re-posted on Saturday and posted again this morning,” said Donahue.

    If closing Newbury Street turns out to be successful, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said the event could happen more often.

    “We are very pleased with today's success and have heard lots of positive feedback already,” said Walsh in a statement. “We look forward to continuing to discuss with the neighborhood's businesses and residents to decide if this is something we can replicate again in the future.”

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