BARCELONA City Hall is banning supermarkets and kitchens whose products are only available for home delivery. The measure will target popular businesses such as Glovo and Getir, which will have to either close or convert into shops where the public can enter.
The plan was presented on Friday by the government of mayor Ada Colau, and is aimed at reducing the negative effect that the council says these businesses have on the local economy and life in the Catalan capital’s neighbourhoods.
It has garnered the support of the governing parties as well as the opposition, and is due to be definitively approved on January 27.
The councillor in charge of urban planning, Janet Sanz, said that the plan ‘puts in order home-delivery activities that are carried out in closed spaces and that are overtaking public spaces’.
She added that the streets of Barcelona would no longer have ‘phantom kitchens nor supermarkets’, in comments reported by Spanish daily El Pais.
The plan also includes a measure that will see bars and restaurants that are bigger than 200 square metres forced to create a dedicated space for their delivery drivers, so that they can rest while they wait for the next order and use the bathroom.
These establishments will have two years to adapt, but the sector has already reacted angrily. The Gremio de Restauracion said that the plan was an ‘absurd rule’ that will force restaurants to be ‘more competitive’.
The plan comes on the back of Barcelona’s so-called ‘Amazon tax’, which targets online sellers such as the American e-commerce giant as well as postal services whose revenues exceed €1 million a year.
The aim of the levy is to tax these companies for the use of public space by delivery vehicles, as well as to level the playing field for small businesses.