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All smiles at Sydney Summer Streets

REDFERN: Redfern Street attracted happy people with smiles on their faces when the street was closed to traffic as part of Sydney Summer Streets on January 23.

Redfern Convenience Store manager Hazem Sedda said on Instagram that lots of people had walked into the store “just to say thank you for what we have been doing for our community in the past 20 years of trade”.

Mr Sedda said people also thanked the store for sourcing Rapid Antigen Tests for an affordable price when they’d been impossible to find elsewhere.

“If makes me feel really proud when my community is so thankful,” he added. “It makes all the hard work and long hours turn into rest as long as you all continue to always smile.”

The council of the City of Sydney (CoS) has worked with local businesses to transform village high streets into spaces for walking, shopping and dining throughout January and February 2022.

Further Sydney Summer Streets street closures and entertainment have enlivened Surry Hills (February 6) and Glebe (February 12) – with Pyrmont and Green Square plaza getting their turn to celebrate on February 19.

The Crown Street and Darlinghurst Road events are funded by the NSW government’s The Festival of Place.

The aim of Sydney Summer Streets is to help residents and businesses to reconnect, celebrate and use the street as a shared community space. CoS provides music and areas for people to linger and businesses offer outdoor dining and retail displays.

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said Summer Streets is a natural extension of the outdoor dining program that has been in place since the beginning of the pandemic.

“Waiving footpath dining fees was one of the first things we did when the pandemic hit Sydney. We wanted to relieve financial strain where we could, and help businesses operate under the social distancing requirements.

“Almost two years later, expanding outdoor dining remains an essential part of what we’re doing to support business through these challenging times. People want to get out of the house and enjoy what Sydney has to offer, safely. We’re now closing off entire streets and hope the extra space will give people a safe way to support local businesses and re-engage with their community.”

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For more information about Summer Streets, visit https://www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/business-support-funding/join-us-sydney-summer-streets

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