A new initiative designed to create greater possibilities for physical “social” distancing outside amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has been expanded in Croydon recently.

The London Streetspace project was touted by Mayor Sadiq Khan earlier this month as a way to allow Londoners to move around with greater freedom while keeping the risk of spreading Covid-19 coronaivirus low.

Croydon Council announced on Friday (May 22) that the methods to create greater space for pedestrians and cyclists moving around were being introduced at seven new sites across the borough.

“The latest step in the borough-wide initiative, will see the pavements widened at six busy pinch-points in Crystal Palace, South Norwood and Thornton Heath, to make it easier for pedestrians to socially distance when passing each other.

“Parking bays will be suspended with barriers set up to expand the pavement on Church Road and Westow Hill, both in Crystal Palace and Clifford Road in South Norwood on Wednesday 27 May and at on High Street, South Norwood and two stretches of Brigstock Road, Thornton Heath, on Friday 29 May,” the council said.

Residents like Vivienne Bartholomew, owner of Vien Vintage on Church Road, welcomed the move: “I think this is a great idea because that stretch of footway is very narrow and Church Road is always a busy thoroughfare. It will give people more confidence,” she said.

Councillor Stuart King, cabinet lead for environment and transport, expanded on the Streetspace project in Croydon.

“As more people prepare to return to work and journey numbers increase, we’re working to quickly bring new schemes into areas where they will be most effective at keeping residents moving safely in line with social distancing guidelines, while helping the wider borough get back on its feet,” he said.

As part of the Streetspace project residents are also permitted to close a small section of their cul-de-sac for a few hours a day, creating an ‘Exercise Street’