WeHo debuts weekend pedestrian zone on Robertson Blvd. to give local businesses a boost

WEST HOLLYWOOD, Calif. (KABC) -- In an effort to reinvigorate businesses in West Hollywood, the city has launched a pilot program that expands outdoor dining and shopping on the weekends.

As part of "OUT on Robertson," the city has turned a portion of Robertson Boulevard between Santa Monica Boulevard and Melrose Avenue into a pedestrian zone. This will allow restaurants and shops to use sidewalks, streets and parking lots to expand their business outdoors.

That stretch of road will be closed to car traffic each weekend, from 6 p.m. on Saturdays through late Sunday nights.

"It's an amazing idea. It's almost like the Third Street Promenade only better, more lively. You have the Abbey, you have all these other restaurants here, great idea to bring people in," said Michael Skotzo of Westlake Village.

Masks are still required and visitors must continue to adhere to physical distancing guidelines.

"I think it's 100% worth it. I think it's worth the traffic coming back, I think it's worth everything else...people just want to be happy again," said Amanda Potter of Studio City.

Many businesses in the area were hit hard by the pandemic. City officials hope the program will create a festive and safe atmosphere, bringing back more patrons.

City Councilmember John D'Amico says other restaurants and non-profits from around the city will do pop-ups in the area in the coming weeks.

However, some residents are worried about increased traffic in the area.

"It's a through street that's been open for a hundred years and all of a sudden, it's being closed for 32 hours every weekend without any consultation with the community, and that's disappointing," said Manny Rodriguez with the West Hollywood West Residents Association.

The program will continue for an unknown duration.
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