City planning officials in Reykjavík are considering the possibility of closing the area around Hlemmur Square to traffic. Mbl.is reports that construction on the rapidly changing square, which is being developed to include more commercial and public space, will begin next year.
The current proposal would see Laugavegur closed south of Hlemmur to private cars between Rauðarárstígur and Snorrabraut. Private vehicle traffic would also be closed in sections east of the square, up to Katrínartún, where the Fíladelfía Pentecostal church is located. This proposal would also see the police station, which is currently located on Hlemmur Square, moved to a new location. An alternative version of this plan would close the area to public buses as well.
Closing these areas to car traffic would mean improved access for pedestrians, which makes sense in that the newly improved Hlemmur Square will no longer be a transportation hub, but will instead become one of the city’s prime shopping centers, including space for food trucks and market stalls.