Chief executive Stephen Tindale said the City would this year look into opening Hay Street and Roberts Road to two-way traffic.
‘This plan has the same reasoning as what has happened on William Street in Northbridge,’ Mr Tindale said.
‘If you want to make a place, it’s not about getting traffic to move through it quickly, it’s about getting people to relax, hop out of their cars and explore.
‘Also, if you’re on a one-way road and you go past something, obviously it’s very hard to come back the other way.’
Heather Levi Interiors owner Cecil Levi said he recalled the early 1990s when Hay Street was two-way.
‘There were many issues with accidents back then because people had to consider two directions of traffic flow,’ Mr Levi said.
‘If it also means we will lose the side-street parking then… well, we already have a dreadful parking issue why would you want to compound that?’
Stimulatte cafe manager Ryan Gray said he was concerned the road works would expand the street and take up part of the sidewalk.
‘If that were to happen it would obviously affect our alfresco dining area and reduce foot traffic,’ Mr Gray said.
But Emporia boutique owner Toni Manolas said Hay Street was two-way when she first opened and could not recall any dramatic negatives.
‘It could potentially calm things down, bring back a street-level feel and make access easier,’ Ms Manolas said.
‘There is no point getting hysterical before we know all the details of the plan.’