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Notting Hill aims to lure boutiques with revamp

The Notting Hill Gate area of London will be revamped to encourage independent retailers and boutiques to the area under proposals unveiled by Kensington and Chelsea council last week.

The plan aims to restore Notting Hill’s bohemian character and create an improved gateway for visitors to Portobello Road, which is already a well-established retail destination.

The council told Drapers the area around Notting Hill tube station and junctions with Kensington Church Street and Pembridge Road have struggled to find an identity against competition from high-quality retail in the nearby Holland Park Avenue and the wider Notting Hill area.
A council spokesman said details of the proposals would be drawn up after consultation with local retailers but that the aim was to significantly improve Notting Hill’s retail offer.

He said: “Kensington and Chelsea council’s vision for Notting Hill Gate is to significantly enhance the area as a district shopping centre, catering for day-to-day local needs and providing high-quality restaurants.

“Boutiques and small independent retailers will also be protected and encouraged, particularly in Kensington Church Street and Pembridge Road.”

The plans will include Section 106 agreements, which make it compulsory for any developer to include affordable retail units suitable for small businesses, and would limit the number of food and drink outlets and estate agents to encourage other retailers.

The council also wants to make the area more pedestrian friendly with wider pavements and to create “wow factor” architecture.

The spokesman said: “Notting Hill Gate tube station is one of the main gateways to Portobello Road but the pavements are narrow and cannot accommodate the number of visitors.”

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