Pedestrians walk up and down Boston's Newbury Street during a 2021 Open Newbury event. Photo courtesy of the city of Boston

The popular Open Newbury car-free shopping events are expanding yet again, Boston Mayor Michelle Wu’s office says.

The events lure crowds of shoppers to the iconic Newbury Street shopping district in Boston’s Back Bay by closing a full mile of the thoroughfare to car traffic and filling the road with performers, pop-up vendors and parklets, plus booths for some of the street’s roughly 250 year-round brick-and-mortar retail tenants.

The event was launched in limited fashion by former Mayor Marty Walsh in 2016 and dramatically expanded under Wu’s tenure in cooperation with the Back Bay Association.

This year the city plans to hold Open Newbury events for 10 consecutive Sundays, June 30 through Sept. 1, and two new days in December to encourage holiday shopping in The Back Bay.

Other additions this year: City officials working with local businesses to establish additional pick-up and drop-off zones on the adjacent streets to better accommodate deliveries throughout the day and a cancellation policy in the event of severe weather, with rain dates being announced the Friday evening before a scheduled Open Newbury Sunday.

“Open Newbury improves our relationship with the community by being more accessible to everyone. That accessibility increases our exposure to the community, which in turn brings us more traffic and business,” Nick Saunders, store manager at Bo Concepts, said in a statement provided by Wu’s office.

Newbury Street Retailers Get More Car-Free Shopping Days

by James Sanna time to read: 1 min